Luka Doncic had a triple-double as the visiting Dallas Mavericks held off the New Orleans Pelicans 123-116 on Friday night.
Doncic, the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year who had 34 points to lead the Mavericks to a season-opening win against Washington two nights earlier, finished with 25 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists.
Kristaps Porzingis added 24 points, Delon Wright scored 20 off the bench and Jalen Brunson had 14.
Brandon Ingram scored 25 as the Pelicans fell to 0-2 in a season that began with the news that top draft choice Zion Williamson will miss six to eight weeks because of arthroscopic knee surgery. Derrick Favors and Josh Hart scored 16 each, Lonzo Ball added 15 and Frank Jackson 10.
Both teams picked up their defense in the third quarter after Dallas had taken a 72-64 halftime lead.
The Mavericks shot just 37 percent from the floor, including 1 for 12 on 3-pointers, as the Pelicans outscored them 29-23 in the third period to cut the lead to two.
Ingram’s jumper pulled New Orleans even at 109 with five minutes remaining, but Doncic broke the tie with a three-point play.
The Mavericks doubled the lead, as Porzingis made a free throw and Brunson added a layup, while the Pelicans missed six consecutive shots.
Ingram cut the lead to three when he made a 3-pointer with 2:36 remaining.
Kenrich Williams made one of two free throws for New Orleans before Doncic made a layup and a 3-pointer for a 120-113 lead with 1:23 left.
Ball made a 3-pointer, but the Pelicans turned the ball over on their next two possessions.
Each team had a 40-plus-point quarter in the first half.
The Pelicans tied a franchise record with 14 assists in the first quarter as they raced to a 41-27 lead at the end of the period. They shot 72 percent from the floor.
Dallas responded with a 45-point second quarter as Porzingis finished the half with 17 points.
—Field Level Media