|5:30 PM PT6:30 PM MT7:30 PM CT8:30 PM ET1:30 GMT9:30 6:30 PM MST8:30 PM EST5:30 UAE (+1)02:3020:30 ET7:30 PM CTNaN:� , January 9, 2019
American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas Attendance: 19,596
Backcourt health a question in Suns-Mavs matchup
Phoenix Suns at Dallas Mavericks
- Over the last three seasons, the Suns have won eight games against the Mavericks, going 8-1 overall. That is the Suns' most wins versus any opponent over that span -- in second is the Kings, who the Suns beat last night for the fifth time since 2016-17.
- Over their last three games, the Mavs have scored 93, 100, and 97 points, respectively. In their first 37 games this season, they only scored under 100 points twice.
- The Suns have shot at least 50.0 percent from the field and at least 40.0 percent from three-point range in each of their last three games. Only three other teams have done that in the NBA this season (Pelicans, Clippers, and Kings) -- no team has done it in four consecutive games.
- T.J. Warren scored a season-high 30 points in his last game against the Mavericks. Of the players to have their season-high scoring night against the Mavs, Warren's 30-point night was fourth highest, behind only Anthony Davis (48), Kent Bazemore (32) and Danilo Gallinari (32).
- Two of the five players in the NBA averaging at least 10.0 rebounds and shooting at least 60.0 percent from the floor will matchup tonight -- Deandre Ayton (10.7 RPG, 60.6 FG%) and DeAndre Jordan (14.1 RPG, 64.5 FG%). The others are Clint Capela, Rudy Gobert and Steven Adams.
- Kelly Oubre Jr. led the Suns with 26 points off the bench last night, his first game as the Suns' leading scorer. His 26 points tied a career-high, set on January 19, 2018.
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The Phoenix Suns learned before Tuesday's game that they would once again be without Devin Booker, their leading scorer and assist man. Yet they managed to find a silver lining by snapping a six-game skid with a 19-point second-half comeback to beat the Sacramento Kings.
They hope to take that momentum to Dallas for a game Wednesday night against the Mavericks, a team they've already defeated twice this season, including once without Booker.
Perhaps with another night's rest, Booker, who sat out with back spasms that flared Sunday against Charlotte, will return to the lineup.
Booker was listed as questionable Tuesday afternoon but was unable to play. It was the 11th time this season that Booker has been forced to sit.
Meanwhile, the Mavs, losers of three straight and 11 of 14, might be without key members of their starting backcourt. Rookie sensation Luka Doncic and second-year guard Dennis Smith Jr., are listed as questionable for Wednesday's game.
Smith sat out Tuesday's practice with what was described as mid-back tightness. Doncic, whose injury was described as a lower back strain, did manage to practice.
The Mavs (18-22) could certainly use all the healthy bodies they can muster against their unlikely nemesis. Over the last two seasons, Phoenix is 5-0 against Dallas while holding the Mavs to 93 points a game.
"They look forward to us. I don't what it is ... it just happens," Mavs guard J.J. Barea said of the Suns' success against his club. "You feel more comfortable against some teams than others."
Tuesday's rally notwithstanding, the Suns (10-32) know their chances of winning are significantly reduced without Booker, who missed 28 games last season with a variety of ailments. Their victory over Dallas last month was the only time Phoenix had won this season without Booker, until beating the Kings.
Booker is averaging 24.8 points and 6.9 assists a game.
"There is no frustration, that's just basketball," Suns first-year coach Igor Kokoskov said of Booker's frequent absences due to injury. "He has to invest a lot more time and everything else in his body and understand that he's got to be in top shape."
Kelly Oubre Jr. led Phoenix in the 115-111 win over Sacramento with 26 points. Rookie big man Deandre Ayton had 17 points and 12 rebounds.
Dallas will be looking to avenge its two double-digit losses at Phoenix, and is also smarting from a home loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday. Playing without LeBron James, the Lakers rallied from a 15-point second-quarter deficit with a 32-13 third quarter en route to a 107-97 victory.
It was easily the most disappointing loss for the Mavs, who dropped to 15-4 at home, after coming off a 1-3 road trip. Dallas figured to have the upper hand because it has been tough to beat on its home floor, and the Lakers were playing the second night of a back-to-back, just as the Suns will be doing.
Phoenix, which is 4-15 on the road, is 0-6 this season when finishing up a back-to-back set.
--Field Level Media
Updated January 9, 2019