Tune-In Tidbits: NBA TV Monday, April 26, 2021
Get ready for Monday's NBA TV doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Brian Martin, for NBA.com
Suns (42-18) at Knicks (34-27)
7:30 p.m. ET, NBA TV
• The Knicks enter Monday riding a nine-game win streak, which is tied for the eighth-longest streak in franchise history and is the longest in eight years (13 straight from March 18-April 9, 2013). Since their streak began on April 9, the Knicks rank first in offensive efficiency (118.7 points per 100 possessions), fourth in true shooting percentage (59.9%) and seventh in defensive efficiency (108.7).
• In five career games at Madison Square Garden, Devin Booker has averaged 29.6 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists, while shooting 50.5% from the field and 37.5% from 3-point range. The Suns are 3-2 in those games.
• Julius Randle enters Monday averaging 24.0 points, 10.5 rebounds and 6.0 assists for the season. He is one of three players this season hitting those marks or better along with Giannis Antetokounmpo and Nikola Jokic. Prior to this season, only four players have averaged 24-10-6 for a full NBA season: Oscar Robertson three times, and two times each by Wilt Chamberlain, Larry Bird and Russell Westbrook.
• The Suns enter Monday looking to avoid their first three-game losing streak since Jan. 22-27 that dropped them to 8-8 on the season before their impressive turnaround. Monday is the final game of a five-game road trip; the Suns are 2-2 on the trip so far, but maintain the league’s top road record at 19-9 (0.679). The Suns have the seventh-best road point differential (plus-2.9). Where they stand out is in clutch games on the road, with the second-best record (11-4) in the league behind Portland (12-3).
• Chris Paul ranks fifth in the league in assists (8.7 per game), with nearly a quarter of those assists going to Deandre Ayton (2.1 per game), who shoots 61.1% on passes from Paul. Of the 80 players with at least 50 pick-and-roll roll man possessions, Ayton ranks third in efficiency (scoring 1.41 points per possession) and fourth in field goal percentage (72.0%), according to Synergy.
Mavericks (33-26) at Kings (24-35)
10 p.m. ET, NBA TV
• The Mavericks enter Monday riding a three-game win streak as they have climbed out of the Play-In Tournament and now hold the No. 6 seed in the West, where they trail the Los Angeles Lakers by just 1.5 games. During the Mavs’ streak, Luka Doncic has nearly averaged a triple-double (26 points, 10 assists, 9 rebounds per game), while Dorian Finney-Smith has added 14 points on 64% shooting and Dwight Powell has averaged 13.7 points on 85.7% shooting.
• The Kings won the first meeting with the Mavericks 121-107 on April 18 in Dallas behind 30 points and 12 assists from De’Aaron Fox (his fifth 30-10 game of the season) and 24 points from former Maverick Harrison Barnes. Luka Doncic led all scorers with 37 points on 14-27 shooting from the field and 4-13 from 3-point range. Doncic scored 13 points on 5-11 FG, 1-5 3P and 2-4 FT in five minutes of matchup time with Maurice Harkless, and had 11 points on 4-6 FG, 2-3 3P, 1-2 FT in 2:18 against Barnes.
• The Kings will be without De’Aaron Fox – their leading scorer (25.4 ppg) and playmaker (7.2 apg) – due to health and safety protocols. Rookie Tyrese Haliburton started in Fox’s place and finished with 24 points and eight assists during Sunday’s 117-113 loss to Golden State. Haliburton has started 16 games this season (most alongside Fox) and averaged 14.8 points and 5.4 assists in 32.1 minutes per game.
• Fox may not be the only starter to miss the game as the Mavs have four starters listed as questionable on their injury report – Luka Doncic (left elbow contusion), Kristaps Porzingis (left ankle sprain), Maxi Kleber (lower back contusion) and Josh Richardson (right hamstring tightness). The Mavs are 32-22 with Doncic in the lineup this season and just 1-4 in the games he has missed.
• Buddy Hield ranks second in the NBA in total 3-pointers made (238) and is shooting 39.0% from beyond the arc this season. However, Buddy shot 0-for-4 from deep and finished with just two points in the first meeting with the Mavs this season. That marked Hield’s lowest-scoring game of the season and his fewest points since being held scoreless on March 9, 2018 against Orlando.