Jayson Tatum, Celtics win battle with Luka Doncic, Mavs

January 23, 2024 4:27 pm

[Source: Reuters]

Jayson Tatum tossed in a game-high 39 points and collected 11 rebounds to help the visiting Boston Celtics defeat the Dallas Mavericks 119-110.

Tatum shot 11 of 21 from the field. He also had five assists, three steals and two blocked shots.

Jaylen Brown added 34 points for the Celtics, who received 17 points from Jrue Holiday and 11 from Al Horford.

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Luka Doncic led the Mavericks with 33 points, a season-high 18 rebounds and 13 assists. Dallas received a 23-point performance from Kyrie Irving, 20 points from Tim Hardaway Jr. and 14 points from Josh Green.

The Mavericks were within seven points after Doncic made two free throws with 4:24 to play, but they never got closer than that.

The Celtics played without starting center Kristaps Porzingis, who missed the game with inflammation in his right knee. Porzingis, who scored 32 points in Sunday’s 116-107 road win against Houston, is averaging 19.5 points and 6.8 rebounds in 32 games this season.

Although Tatum scored 13 points in the first quarter, Dallas had a 26-24 lead after 12 minutes of action. The Celtics were 1 of 10 from 3-point range in the quarter.

Boston had a 10-point lead after Holiday made a 3-pointer with 6:59 remaining in the second quarter, and it stretched the lead to 14 points, 55-41, on a Horford 3-pointer with 4:41 remaining in the first half. The Celtics made nine of their 16 3-point attempts in the second and led 65-59 at halftime. Tatum and Hardaway each scored 18 points in the first half.

The Celtics regained a double-digit advantage after a Horford trey put Boston up 71-61 with 10:08 left in the third quarter. Boston started the period with a 14-5 run and led 79-64 after Holiday connected on a 3-pointer with 7:31 remaining.

A Tatum layup gave the Celtics a 90-74 lead — Boston’s largest lead of the game — with 3:35 left in the third, and Dallas trailed 94-83 entering the fourth.