Irving, Doncic put on NBA masterclass in Mavericks win
Australia's Olympic bronze medallist Josh Green has enjoyed a close-up view of an NBA masterclass as his Dallas Mavericks surged to a 133-126 win over the Philadelphia 76ers.
Green, who helped the Boomers to third place at the Tokyo Games in 2021, enjoyed 32 minutes of court time and added five points as the Mavericks' new All-Star pairing of Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving put on a show for the ages.
Doncic scored 42 points and Irving added 40 more - leaving even 76ers superstar Joel Embiid (35 points) in the shade in a sparkling display.
"Luka was ready for the party," Irving said. "And I was ready for the party tonight.
"It was one of those games where we had some special performances. I'm just grateful that the work translated because it could have gone either way."
Doncic was equally delighted with their evening's work, saying of his new teammate: "If I had to pay to watch someone play, it would be him for sure."
The Dallas pair each had a 20-point first half while combining for 45, then united to score 10 points in the first 102 seconds of the third quarter to start a 20-4 run for a 91-71 lead.
But the 76ers scored the first 15 points of the fourth quarter to get within four with Embiid and James Harden watching from the bench, which brought Doncic back in the game earlier than planned.
The return of Doncic, who had 12 assists, got Irving going again with a three-point play and a deep 3-pointer before Doncic hit another long one for a 119-108 lead. They combined to go 13 of 21 from deep.
Five other Mavericks hit 3-pointers as Dallas finished with a season-high 25 threes on 48 attempts (52 per cent).
"They were tough with one wizard with the basketball in Luka," Sixers forward Tobias Harris said.
"Now they've got two of them out there. Those are tough matchups. They just picked us apart tonight."
Earlier, the Washington Wizards beat the Toronto Raptors 119-108 in the opener of a two-game set between the Eastern Conference play-off contenders.
Kyle Kuzma scored the game's first 10 points and finished with 30, while Kristaps Porzingis added 25 points for the Wizards.
O.G. Anunoby scored 26 points and Jakob Poeltl had 23 points and 13 rebounds for the Raptors, who had won five of their previous six games.
The San Antonio Spurs beat Indiana 110-99, while the Golden State Warriors made light of the continuing absence of Stephen Curry to ease past the Los Angeles Clippers 115-91.
The Warriors hope to have Curry - a four-time NBA champion - back in action in time for next week's three-game road trip.
- with AP