The Dallas Mavericks scored the first 13 points of the second half to erase a deficit, and they rode Luka Doncic’s 26-point, 14-rebound performance to a 116-106 victory over the visiting Houston Rockets on Tuesday night.
Reggie Bullock and Tim Hardaway Jr. each chipped in with 16 for the Mavericks, who were embarrassed 133-108 in the Rockets’ only visit to Dallas last season.
Houston led for most of the first half and took a 60-57 edge into the intermission, but 44 seconds later, that advantage was gone for good.
Hoops by Hardaway and Doncic on Dallas’ first two possessions of the third period triggered the burst that opened a 10-point Mavericks advantage. Hardaway added a 3-pointer and Doncic a three-point play to the run, which extended more than four minutes before David Nwaba ended Houston’s drought.
Looking to avoid a third loss in four games, the Rockets closed within two on a pair of occasions early in the fourth period, the last time on an Alperen Sengun 3-pointer with 11:13 to go.
Boban Marjanovic countered with a pair of baskets before Bullock hit 2- and 3-pointers in a 9-0 flurry that put the Mavericks in command the rest of the way.
Doncic shot just 10-for-25 overall and 1-for-6 on 3-point attempts, but complemented his double-double with seven assists.
Jalen Brunson also posted a double-double with 11 points and a game-high 11 assists, and Marjanovic finished with 11 points for the Mavericks, who were playing their home opener after splitting a pair on the road to begin the season.
The Mavericks outshot the Rockets 46.2 percent to 41.9 percent.
Hitting 3 of 5 from 3-point range, Eric Gordon paced Houston with 22 points off the bench. Starters Christian Wood (16), Daniel Theis (15), Kevin Porter Jr. (13) and Jalen Green (10) also scored in double figures.
Wood and Theis notched double-doubles, Wood with a game-high 17 rebounds, Theis with 10 boards. Porter added a team-high eight assists.
The Rockets outscored the Mavericks 48-36 on 3-pointers to keep the game competitive.