Porzingis starts fast in return, Mavs roll past Magic 108-92

DALLAS, TEXAS - JANUARY 15: Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks drives the ball past Chuma Okeke #3 of the Orlando Magic in the first half at American Airlines Center on January 15, 2022 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges

Kristaps Porzingis scored 12 of his 19 points in the first quarter of his first game in two weeks and the Dallas Mavericks cruised to a 108-92 victory over the Orlando Magic on Saturday night.

The 7-foot-3 Latvian was sharp from the start after missing seven games because of COVID-19. Porzingis hit four of five shots in the opening quarter, capped by a 3-pointer that barely beat the buzzer after a pump fake created a clean look from the corner.

Luka Doncic scored 23 points in the eighth win in nine games for the Mavericks. Dallas was playing a night after ending Memphis' 11-game winning streak and got coach Jason Kidd back from a four-game absence after his positive COVID-19 test.

Robin Lopez, Moritz Wagner and Jalen Suggs scored 16 points apiece for the Magic, who never led a night after ending a 10-game losing streak with a victory at Charlotte. Orlando is an NBA-worst 8-36.

After Orlando cut a steady double-digit deficit to eight on a jump hook from Lopez in the third quarter, the Mavericks quickly pushed it back to at least 10 for good when Dwight Powell dunked on an assist from Jalen Brunson, who scored 19 points. Dallas took its first 20-point lead early in the fourth quarter.

Kidd said the Mavericks would keep an eye on Porzingis in terms of conditioning, and he ended up playing 28 minutes, slightly below his season average. All of Porzingis' points after the first quarter came at the free throw line, where he was 9 of 12.


Magic: Coach Jamahl Mosley made his first trip to Dallas after spending the previous seven seasons as an assistant with the Mavericks. "The people here, the relationships that I've built and my family has built, it's just great to see the wonderful people that have been here," Mosley said before the game. ... Chuma Okeke was called for a technical foul in the third quarter after a review that appeared to be initiated over whether Cole Anthony made excessive contact when he hit Doncic in the head on a foul. 

Mavericks: F Marquese Chriss signed a multiyear deal after joining the Mavericks on 10-day contracts under the relaxed COVID-19 guidelines. Dallas waived C Willie Cauley-Stein to make room for Chriss on the roster. Cauley-Stein hadn't played since Nov. 27 and was on an extended absence for personal reasons. ... Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 17 points.


Magic: Host Portland on Monday. The Trail Blazers have nine consecutive victories against the Magic.

Mavericks: Host Oklahoma City on Monday. The Mavericks won both games at the Thunder and can clinch the season series with a victory.