DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — All-Star guard Luka Doncic wasn’t on the court, but Kristaps Porzingis had 24 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks, and Dallas hit a season-high 19 3-pointers as the Mavericks routed the Charlotte Hornets 120-96 on Monday night.
Porzingis led the Mavericks (14-13) to a 70-43 halftime lead, securing his sixth double-double of the season with 22 points and 12 rebounds before the break. The 7-foot-3 Latvian played only eight minutes in the second half to finish with 25.READ MORE: Plano Police Arrest Adrien Javon Grant, 29, Accused Of Shooting Jesaias Hiram Nieves
“We started off shooting really well, and it kind of carried over to everybody,” Porzingis said.
Porzingis only recently began playing both ends of back-to-backs as he gradually made a full recovery from knee surgery in October 2020. He had 13 points and seven rebounds while playing 30 minutes Sunday night in a 103-84 victory against the Thunder in Oklahoma City.
“Obviously, some games are physically more taxing,” Porzingis said. “Yesterday wasn’t one of those games. I felt better than I did yesterday.”
Trey Burke scored a season-high 22 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. had 19 off the bench for the Mavericks. They combined on 6-for-9 shooting from 3-point range before halftime as Dallas snapped a five-game home losing streak with its largest winning margin of the season.
The Hornets (15-14), who opened a six-game road trip, their longest of the season, were led by Terry Rozier and Kelly Oubre Jr. with 20 points each. Rozier played his first game after missing four while in the NBA’s COVID-19 protocol.
“It’s a disappointing loss, but it’s one,” Hornets coach James Borrego said. “Now, it’s about responding.”READ MORE: Royse City High School Student Arrested For Allegedly Taking A Gun To School
Charlotte played its fifth straight game without guard LaMelo Ball, who is still in the league’s health and safety protocol. Hornets forwards PJ Washington and Nick Richards returned from non-COVID-19 illnesses.
In their previous game, the Hornets were without seven of their top 10 players. Charlotte center Mason Plumlee and forward Jalen McDaniels left the health and safety protocol Monday and were assigned to Greensboro of the G League for conditioning and rehab.
“I don’t know who’s going to be back next game,” Borrego said. “We’ve just got to find our way through this.”
Dallas scored the first 10 points — the first five on Porzingis’ alley-oop dunk and a corner 3-pointer — while Charlotte missed its first seven field goal attempts.
“He was great from the start,” Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said about Porzingis.
Dallas led by 30 in the closing seconds of the first half (70-40).
Doncic retwisted an ankle Friday night at Indiana. The Mavericks were 0-4 without the 22-year-old Slovenian before Sunday’s win.MORE NEWS: Federal Judge Throws Out Lease Sale For Gulf Of Mexico Offshore Oil Drilling
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)