It was time to squeeze and the movement paid off. The Mavericks were on their way to the playoffs with a Pelicans without Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram, Steven Adams and Lonzo Ball. On a silver platter. The Blazers and Lakers squeeze from behind for those fifth and sixth places that are worth so much. With this, the Texans headed for a cheating company, but they solved it. The return of Kristaps Porzingis, who has been out for the last two weeks due to physical discomfort, was the best excuse to get into the next gear and take the game forward, also clearly.
Dallas beat New Orleans by 125-107 in his pavilion. Luka Doncic, with a good shooting accuracy (7/15 in triples), went up to 33 points, 8 rebounds and 8 assists to lead his team. Hardaway had 27 as a starter and Porzingis stayed at 19. Willy Hernangómez, 12 + 10 on the other side.
With this, the Mavericks have a clearer picture for the future, with the cloud of play-in going to another team. They knew they couldn’t fail with the tools they had and they did. Doncic was spectacular in the second quarter, without failure, at the time when the Pelicans were hurt the most and where they achieved an advantage that put the rival with arms akimbo. Toronto and Minnesota, two teams eliminated, are the last two games for Rick Carlisle, who rub their hands with the direct pass to the playoffs.