Doncic, Mavs overcome slow start, beat Pelicans 108-92

Nov 8, 2021, 5:57 AM | Updated: 8:40 pm
Dallas Mavericks' Boban Marjanovic, left front, New Orleans Pelicans' Jonas Valanciunas (17), Maver...

Dallas Mavericks' Boban Marjanovic, left front, New Orleans Pelicans' Jonas Valanciunas (17), Mavericks' Kristaps Porzingis, center rear, and Mavericks' Luka Doncic, front right, talk after their NBA basketball game in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

              Dallas Mavericks' Boban Marjanovic, left front, New Orleans Pelicans' Jonas Valanciunas (17), Mavericks' Kristaps Porzingis, center rear, and Mavericks' Luka Doncic, front right, talk after their NBA basketball game in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              Dallas Mavericks' Jalen Brunson (13) shoots over New Orleans Pelicans center Jonas Valanciunas (17) as Mavericks' Kristaps Porzingis, left, and Pelicans' Josh Hart (3) look on in the second half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              Referee Mark Lindsay, left, talks to Dallas Mavericks' Luka Doncic after a play in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Pelicans in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              New Orleans Pelicans guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker (6) motions to teammates in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Dallas Mavericks in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              Dallas Mavericks center Kristaps Porzingis (6) shoots over New Orleans Pelicans guard Trey Murphy III (25) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              Dallas Mavericks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (11) celebrates sinking a 3-point basket in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Pelicans in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
            
              Dallas Mavericks center Kristaps Porzingis (6) blocks a shot attempt by New Orleans Pelicans' Naji Marshall (8) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas, Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

DALLAS (AP) — Luka Doncic scored 25 points, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Jalen Brunson added 17 apiece and the Dallas Mavericks overcame a sluggish start for a 108-92 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night.

Still without Zion Williamson because of a broken right foot, the Pelicans went up 11 in the first quarter but didn’t lead again after the first few minutes of the second quarter in a seventh consecutive loss that dropped them to 1-10.

With Doncic watching to start the fourth, Brunson and Hardaway led a 12-0 run that gave the Mavericks a 93-71 lead. Hardaway was 4 of 5 on 3-pointers as the Mavericks shot better than 50% for a second straight game after starting 2 of 12.

Brunson scored in double figures for a fourth consecutive game, a stretch that included a career high-tying 31 points in a victory at San Antonio that started the current three-game winning streak.

“The confidence is always growing,” Brunson said. “Part of that just comes from my work ethic. That’s where my confidence starts. As long as I keep doing that for my team, my confidence is going to be there.”

Kristaps Porzingis picked up three fouls in just 77 seconds in the second quarter after hitting consecutive 3-pointers late in the first to start a 22-4 run for a 38-31 Dallas lead.

The 7-foot-3 Latvian left with nine points and didn’t score again until a late 3 that helped turn away a New Orleans surge after the game appeared out of reach. Porzingis had 12 points on 4-of-13 shooting and eight rebounds.

Jonas Valanciunas had 22 points and 11 rebounds and Josh Hart scored a season-high 22 for the Pelicans, who were coming off a 41-point loss to Golden State. New Orleans lost by double figures each time on a four-game trip that matched its longest of the season.

Besides Williamson, the Pelicans were without Brandon Ingram and Herbert Jones. Ingram missed his fifth consecutive game with a right hip contusion. Jones was out for a third in a row with left ankle soreness.

“It’s part of what we have to go through as a team,” coach Willie Green said. “No excuses, but we’re not healthy. We’re not whole. We really don’t know what we’re going to look like, but I believe this experience for all these guys is so valuable.”

TIP-INS

Pelicans: Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored 18 points but was just 2 of 11 from 3. … Devonte Graham had a season-high 10 assists.

Mavericks: F Maxi Kleber missed his fourth straight game with a left oblique muscle strain. … Reggie Bullock scored 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting. … Brunson had six assists to five for Doncic as Dallas finished with a season-high 27.

RUNNING AWAY

After New Orleans got even at 61 midway through the third quarter, the Mavericks went on a 29-7 run into the early part of the fourth quarter. Although the Pelicans trimmed their deficit to eight, the outcome was never really in doubt.

UP NEXT

Pelicans: Oklahoma City visits Wednesday. The road team has won the past five games in the series.

Mavericks: At Chicago on Wednesday to start a stretch of six out of seven games on the road. The Bulls have a three-game winning streak against the Mavs.

___

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