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Mavs’ Kristaps Porzingis is first player since Shaquille O’Neal to post back-to-back 30 points, 5 blocks


Wednesday night’s highly anticipated matchup between the Dallas Mavericks and New Orleans Pelicans might have been a chance for many to watch Zion Williamson and Luka Doncic battle for the first time, but Kristaps Porzingis reminded everyone of his presence on both ends of the floor.

The former New York big man recorded 34 points and 5 blocks on the overtime win against the New Orleans Pelicans. This was just a game after dropping 38 points and five blocks in a blowout win against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The last player who had such numbers in back-to-back games was Shaquille O’Neal back in 2000.

The Latvian superstar’s scoring numbers might be down at 19.2 points per game, but his 9.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game are career-highs. Lately, Porzingis has also been a beast on the defensive end, averaging 2.7 blocks over his past ten games.

With his team improving to 38-25, the Mavs now sits more comfortably on the seventh spot of the Western Conference. After grabbing the win, they also have a greater chance of overtaking the Oklahoma City Thunder for the sixth seed.

Porzingis’ numbers were matched by Slovenian sophomore Luka Doncic, who had an equally monstrous performance. The first-time All-Star had his 22nd triple-double of the season at 30 points, 17 rebounds, and 10 assists, breaking Jason Kidd’s record of 21. Mavs forward Maxi Kleber also held well on the defensive end, matching Porzingis’ blocks with five of his own.

Brandon Ingram, on the other hand, led the New Orleans Pelicans with 27 points. Subsequently, first overall pick Zion Williamson added 21 points and 6 rebounds in his first back-to-back game.