National Basketball Association
Preview
Dallas at New Orleans
When: 6:00 PM ET, Sunday, January 25, 2015
Where: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, Louisiana

The New Orleans Pelicans just got above .500 and have no intention of going backward. In order to stay above the break-even point, the Pelicans will have to solve the Dallas Mavericks, who visit on Sunday and have taken nine straight in the series. The Mavericks had a three-game winning streak come to an end with a 102-98 home loss to the Chicago Bulls on Friday and will need to figure out a way to deal with Anthony Davis and Omer Asik on the glass.

Dallas was outrebounded 47-30 by the Bulls and grabbed a season-low 29 boards while squeezing out a 112-107 home victory over the Pelicans on Dec. 10. “You know, we’ve just got to get a little bit better,” Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki told reporters. “We’re not the most physical, athletic front line, so we’ve all got to get in there and get a couple (of rebounds) and pick up a couple of those long ones here or there. I always think that when we keep the board game sort of close and keep it within range we give ourselves a chance to win.” Davis had 12 rebounds in New Orleans’ 92-84 win at Minnesota on Friday.

TV: 6 p.m. ET, FSN Southwest (Dallas), FSN New Orleans

ABOUT THE MAVERICKS (30-14):
The Mavericks made one of the bigger trade moves of the first half of the season by bringing in point guard Rajon Rondo from Boston, but the former All-Star is struggling of late. Rondo is averaging 5.8 points on 33.3 percent shooting in the last four games and was benched in the final five minutes on Friday. “Coach made a decision. It's as simple as that,” Rondo told reporters. “I've been in this game a long time. It's not like it's the end of the world. I like what Coach Carlisle has done for me this year. I don't have any regrets.”

ABOUT THE PELICANS (22-21):
New Orleans is 13-5 in its own building and is kicking off a six-game homestand against the Mavericks. Eric Gordon’s healthy return to the lineup is helping to cover for the loss of Jrue Holiday (leg) and is providing a big boost offensively as the shooting guard is putting up 15.3 points while shooting 40.4 percent from 3-point range in the last 10 games. Gordon is starting in the backcourt alongside Tyreke Evans, who exemplifies the Pelicans’ home-road issues with averages of 20.6 points on 49 percent shooting at home versus 14.5 points on 38.7 on the road.

BUZZER BEATERS


1. Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle needs one win to join San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich, Los Angeles’ Doc Rivers and Minnesota’s Flip Saunders as the only active coaches with 600 career wins.

2. New Orleans F Ryan Anderson (ankle inflammation) missed Friday’s game but could return on Sunday.

3. Nowitzki is averaging 21.5 points on 55.6 percent shooting in the last four games, including 10-of-18 from 3-point range.

PREDICTION: Pelicans 99, Mavericks 97
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Dallas 30-14 L1 14-7 16-7 2-2 28-12 4-3 14-9
New Orleans 22-21 W2 13-5 9-16 2-2 20-19 5-4 16-11
Last Meeting
Dallas New Orleans
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
12/10/14 NO 107 DAL 112 112 29 53.0 107 45 45.5
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Dallas M. Ellis 26 57.9 2
New Orleans A. Davis 31 55.0 9
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Dallas T. Chandler 6 2 4
New Orleans O. Asik 15 5 10
Assists Player  
Dallas M. Ellis 5
New Orleans J. Holiday 10
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Dallas M. Ellis 928 45.0 155
New Orleans A. Davis 1052 55.9 232
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Dallas T. Chandler 548 190 358
New Orleans A. Davis 454 117 337
Assists Player  
Dallas M. Ellis 216
New Orleans J. Holiday 283
Quickchart Matchup
Dallas Off vs  New Orleans Defense
107.9 Points For
99.6 Points Against
47.1 FG%
46.0 FG%
42.1 Reb
41.5 Reb
New Orleans Off vs  Dallas Defense
100.2 Points For
101.7 Points Against
45.7 FG%
45.0 FG%
41.5 Reb
45.5 Reb