Doncic pours in 42 points, Mavericks top Suns 120-113

Bjelica

By DAVID BRANDT AP Sports Writer

PHOENIX (AP) — Luka Doncic tied a career high with 42 points, Tim Hardaway Jr. added 26 and the Dallas Mavericks beat the Phoenix Suns 120-113 on Friday night.

Doncic just missed a triple-double with 11 assists and nine rebounds. Hardaway shot 6 of 9 from 3-point range to help offset a quiet night from Kristaps Porzingis, who finished with two points.

The teams entered the final quarter tied at 89. The Mavericks went on an 8-0 run midway through the fourth to take a 104-97 lead and never trailed again.

Frank Lucchesi

Doncic was coming off subpar outing Tuesday night in a loss to the Clippers, where he shot 4 of 14 from the field and missed all eight 3-point attempts. The 20-year-old was superb in Phoenix, making 12 of 24 shots from the field and 15 of 18 free throws.

Phoenix has lost six of its last seven games. Kelly Oubre Jr. led the Suns with 22 points and 10 rebounds, and Ricky Rubio added 21 points and nine assists.

Doncic had 14 points, six rebounds and six assists in the first quarter as the Mavericks edged to a 53-50 halftime lead. Oubre had 13 for the Suns.

A FREE THROW ADVENTURE

Suns forward Frank Kaminsky inadvertently contributed to a rally with two of the worst free throws of his professional career.

Kaminsky — a respectable 76% career free throw shooter — had a stunning air ball on his first of two free throws during the third quarter. He overcompensated on the second, pounding it off the backboard and rim before getting his own offensive rebound.

The extra possession led to a huge dunk by Devin Booker to put the Suns up 69-63.

TIP-INS

Mavericks: Porzingis and Phoenix’s Aron Baynes both received technical fouls in the second quarter when they got into an argument coming off the court during a timeout. … Doncic averaged a 30-point triple-double in November, becoming just the third NBA to accomplish that feat in a calendar month, joining Oscar Robertson (five times) and Russell Westbrook (twice). … The Mavericks improved to 12-6 for their best start since the 2010-11 season when they won an NBA title. … Porzingis missed all eight shots he took from the field, including six 3-pointers.

Suns: Baynes returned to the lineup after a five-game absence because of a right hip flexor sprain. He finished with 17 points and seven rebounds in 25 minutes. … Phoenix fell to 8-10.

UP NEXT

Mavericks: At Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday.

Suns: At Charlotte on Monday night.