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Tune-In Tidbits: ESPN Friday, Jan. 15, 2021

Get ready for Friday's ESPN doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.

Brian Martin, for NBA.com

Two of the top Kia MVP candidates – Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo and Dallas’ Luka Doncic – meet for the first time this season tonight on ESPN.

Dallas Mavericks (6-4) at Milwaukee Bucks (8-4) | 7:30 ET, ESPN

  1. Last season, the Dallas Mavericks set the record for the highest offensive rating in league history at 115.9 points per 100 possessions. Through their first 12 games this season, the Milwaukee Bucks have an offensive rating of 118.1, including hitting a league-high 16.5 3-pointers per game on 41.3%, more 3PM per game than any team has averaged since 1996-97.
  2. The Mavericks enter Friday riding a four-game win streak. During the streak, Luka Doncic has averaged a triple-double (31.3 PPG, 12.0 RPG, 10.8 APG) while Tim Hardaway Jr. has averaged 23.8 points on 53.7% (22-41) shooting from deep.

  3. Kristaps Porzingis finished with 16 points, four rebounds, two blocks and four 3-pointers in 21 minutes as he made his season debut in Dallas’ win over Charlotte on Wednesday. It was Porzingis’ first action 145 days as he has been out since Game 3 of Dallas’ first round loss to the LA Clippers on Aug. 21.

  4. Luka Doncic leads the NBA in drives to the basket at 23.2 per game. His drives result in 13.7 points per game (5.2 FGM, 3.1 FTM per game) and 1.9 assists per game for his teammates. Doncic’s 56% shooting on drives ranks 12th among the 50 players that average at least 10 drives per game.

  5. Giannis Antetokounmpo (26.2 PPG, 10.1 RPG, 5.5 APG) is the only player in the NBA to average at least 25 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists so far this season. He was also the only player to reach those averages in each of the past two seasons when he was named league MVP.

 

Anthony Davis enters Friday with a 3-0 record against his former team in New Orleans.

New Orleans Pelicans (4-6) at Los Angeles Lakers (10-3) | 10:00 ET, ESPN

  1. The Lakers are the only team in the NBA to rank in the top five in both offensive efficiency (114.8, 4th) and defensive efficiency (104.4, 1st).
  2. The Lakers have opened the season with a franchise-record seven straight road wins, but are just 3-3 so far at Staples Center. While their offense has been superior at home (116.3 OffRtg) compared to on the road (113.5), their defense has been far worse at home (110.0 DefRtg) than on the road (99.4).

  3. The Pelicans enter Friday looking to snap a four-game losing streak, with all four games decided by single digits (16 points total). New Orleans is just 2-4 in games featuring clutch time (score within five points in final five minutes), while the Lakers are 4-1 so far this season in the clutch.

  4. The Lakers enter Friday looking to extend their four-game win streak as they have averaged 120.5 points and outscored their opponents by an average of 16.5 points over the past four games. LeBron James is averaging a team-best 24.5 points during the streak, while Anthony Davis has added 21.3 points on 72.7% shooting in three games during the streak.

  5. This is a matchup of the top two rebounding teams in the league as the Pelicans rank first, grabbing 54.4% of all rebounds (2nd in OREB%, 1st in DREB%) and the Lakers rank second at 53.5% (11th in OREB%, 2nd in DREB%). Which team will control the glass and take advantage of second-chance points? The Lakers average a league-high 16.8 second-chance points, while the Pelicans rank fifth at 14.7.

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