Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks
Luka Doncic will be a marked man when the Mavs host the Celtics on Thursday, Jan. 5. Ron Jenkins/Getty Images


  • The Celtics will try to end their losing spell when they visit the streaking Dallas Maverick
  • Boston needs to find a way to contain Luka Doncic
  • The Mavericks have to keep an eye on Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum

The Boston Celtics are coming off a recent loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, 117-150, and things are expected to get harder as they try to clamp down on a red-hot Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks.

Regardless, the Celtics are leading the Eastern Conference with a 24-13 win-loss record, tied with the Memphis Grizzlies.

Boston cannot afford another loss since bowing to the Mavs will likely dislodge them from the top and send them down the standings.

Interim head coach Joe Mazzulla will rely anew on the deadly duo of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, who finished with 29 and 27 points respectively against the Thunder.

However, noticeably lacking is the bench support with Marcus Smart visibly missing.

The Celtics are scoring 118.6 points on offense and have shot 47.8% from the field–the most points scored per contest and the 11th-highest team shooting percentage.

Defensively, they are limiting opponents to 113.3 points per game and allowing the opposition to only 47.2% from the field.

The Mavericks are coming off a huge win over the Rockets, led no less by Doncic who continues his scoring splurge.

The Slovenian finished with 39 points and 12 rebounds against Houston, backed up by Tim Hardaway Jr. and Christian Wood who scored 21 markers each.

Dallas is scoring 112.6 points per game and shooting 47.1% from the field.

On the defensive end, they are allowing opponents 110.3 points and are forcing opponents to shoot just 48% from the field.

Despite holding homecourt advantage, pundits have given the Celtics a -2.5 odds of pulling off a win and stopping their skid compared to the Mavericks' +2.5.

Boston has a Moneyline of -131, while Dallas is at +110.

The Mavericks brace for a redemption-seeking Celtics on Thursday, January 5, with the tip-off starting at 7:30 PM ET.

The game will be aired on the NBC Sports Network and TNT, and it can also be viewed via live stream on fuboTV.

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics
Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown will have their work cut out for them as they try to pull off a win over the Dallas Mavericks. Michael Reaves/Getty Images