After an embarrassing blowout loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, the Mavericks bounced back on Wednesday night, defeating the New Orleans Pelicans 125-107.
Big-man Kristaps Porzingis finally made his return to the court from injury, scoring 19 points and five rebounds. After the game, Porzingis made it clear that the team is ready for the road ahead:
"We're right where we need to be right before the playoffs. I'm glad I'm healthy right now and we're ready to go... Hell yeah. We have a couple more games... and then the playoffs. That's like the desert."
Mavericks star Luka Doncic rebounded well from his ‘worst game ever’, recording 33 points, eight rebounds, and eight assists. Another key contributor was Tim Hardaway Jr., who started and scored 27 points.
With two games left, the Mavericks are once again controlling their own destiny in a potential playoff play-in scenario and currently sit in the coveted fifth seed.
Now let's hear Mavs talk:
Porzingis on his current state:
"I'm looking forward to peaking now."
Doncic on whether playoff positioning takes precedence over avoiding the play-in tournament:
"If you want to win a championship, you've got to beat everybody, so I think we'll go from there."
Head coach Rick Carlisle on Porzingis' return:
"I thought his rhythm looked surprisingly good for a guy who's been out for close to two weeks."
Hardaway Jr. on starting:
"I'd rather start. I think most players would rather start, but if it's best for me to come off the bench, let's go."
Dallas will now move on and face the Toronto Raptors at home on Friday night. The game is scheduled to tip-off at 7:00 PM.