Lakers winning streak comes to an end

Mumbai, Dec 3 (IANS) Los Angeles Lakers 10-game winning streak came to an end during week seven of the NBA season after visiting team Dallas Mavericks beat them 114-100.

Luka Doncic scored 27 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds, 21 of which were scored in the second-half. Mavericks captured their seventh in eight games.

Anthony Davis got 27 points on board for Lakers while Lebron James finished with 25 points and nine rebounds.

Coming up in December is a stretch in which Lakers play eight of nine games on the road, the last of which is at Milwaukee. So far the Lakers have taken advantage of a relatively soft early schedule, crucial given the importance of keeping LeBron James and Anthony Davis healthy.

One of the teams which has stood out is Milwaukee Bucks. They’ve already racked up 11 wins in a row and have one of NBA’s easiest remaining schedules.

If Milwaukee gets through December relatively unscathed, there’s a decent chance that by the end of the month the chatter about 70 wins will start to pick up.

Defending champs Toronto Raptors haven’t skipped a beat during the absence of Kyle Lowry who was in the midst of a career year prior to sustaining a fractured thumb against the Pelicans on November 8. Prior to that game in New Orleans, Lowry was averaging 24.0 points per game on 48 percent shooting, both of which would have been the best of his career.

With Lowry out, Fred VanVleet has done far more than simply fill in as was evident in Sunday’s win over the Jazz in which he finished with 21 points, 11 assists and no turnovers while outplaying both Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley. Given the play of VanVleet and Pascal Siakam, Lowry’s return means the Raptors could move forward with a trio of potential 2020 All-Stars.

The Clippers might not be at their best this season and it’s in large part because they’ve rarely been at full strength. When push comes to shove, there’s a reason the Clippers have the best odds to win the NBA title and it’s because when at full strength, they will be a handful for anyone.

Their best five players are likely starters Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Patrick Beverley along with Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell. That’s a group that’s played just 22 minutes together so far this season, but the one most likely to see the floor when it matters the most.

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