Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving have proved any doubters wrong after leading the Dallas Mavericks to a seventh straight win.

That is the opinion of coach Jason Kidd, whose Dallas team overcame the Phoenix Suns 123-113 on Thursday.

Doncic had 41 points, nine rebounds and 11 assists, while Irving finished with 29 points.

Dallas have been without at least one of Doncic or Irving in 27 games this season due to injuries, but the duo have now started in the last seven games.

"I think it answers the questions that those two co-exist quite well," Kidd said.

"I think it just shows again, our health, our energy, everything's positive right now. I think the guys are having fun. You can see that energy on the floor.

"They want to win, and you can see that energy on the floor. Those guys are cheering for one another.

"There's going to be mistakes, there's going to be missed shots, but it's on to the next play.

"You can see that. We were on a roll and then we go on [the All-Star] break. Sometimes you can come out flat, but I thought the guys did a great job tonight."

Devin Booker led the Suns with 35 points, though Phoenix were unable to keep Doncic or Irving down.

"You just have to know that, especially after he makes one, that the next one is coming up," Booker said of Irving.

"He's a great player and hard to guard. We definitely could have limited some of those transition looks."

The Suns have lost two of their last four games, and are now one place below the Mavericks in the Western Conference.

"We didn't start the third quarter with enough attentiveness," Suns coach Frank Vogel said.

"We did get a little too stagnant offensively. We had some breakdowns with what we were supposed to do. That led to some tough possessions."

Kyrie Irving scored 36 points in a stellar return to Brooklyn and Luka Doncic fell just short of a triple-double in the Dallas Mavericks’ 119-107 win over the Nets on Tuesday.

Irving, acquired from the Nets exactly one year ago, shot 15 of 24 from the field, was 4 of 11 on 3-pointers and handed out five assists in his second game back after missing six with a sprained right thumb.

Doncic had 35 points, 18 rebounds and nine assists to come up short for his 10th triple-double of the season.

Mikal Bridges scored 28 points and Royce O’Neal added 18 for Brooklyn, which cut a 23-point deficit to 107-101 with roughly five minutes left before Irving hit two straight 3s for a 113-101 advantage.

 

Brunson hurts ankle in Knicks’ win

Jalen Brunson had 27 points and eight assists before leaving with an ankle injury and Donte DiVincenzo had 32 points as the New York Knicks held off the Memphis Grizzlies, 123-113.

Brunson appeared to injure his ankle when he was fouled by G.G. Jackson with 5:31 remaining. The Knicks did not have an update postgame.

Isaiah Hartenstein had 17 points and eight rebounds and Precious Achiuwa added 17 as the Knicks won for the 10th time in 11 games to move to 16-3 in their last 19.

Vince Williams Jr. led seven players in double figures with 19 points, but Memphis lost its sixth straight game to match a season high.

 

Suns’ star trio delivers in win

Devin Booker scored 32 points and Kevin Durant had 28 and 10 rebounds as the Phoenix Suns pushed past the short-handed Milwaukee Bucks, 114-106.

Bradley Beal added 25 points and 10 rebounds and Jusuf Nurkic had 10 points with 10 boards as the Suns won their third in four games despite missing 20 of 28 from 3-point range.

Giannis Antetokoumpo led Milwaukee with 34 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, but the Bucks dropped to 1-4 since hiring coach Doc Rivers.

Damian Lillard missed the game with a sprained ankle and starting center Brook Lopez was out for personal reasons. Forward Khris Middleton left in the first quarter with a sprained ankle.

Donovan Mitchell scored 29 points and led a torrid shooting performance from 3-point range that carried the Cleveland Cavaliers to a sixth consecutive win, a 136-110 rout of the Sacramento Kings on Monday. 

Cleveland rolled to its 14th victory in 15 games by going 23 of 41 (56.1 percent) from beyond the arc. Mitchell finished 5 of 11 on 3-point tries and Max Strus was 6 for 10 while adding 22 points.

The Kings got 12 points, 19 rebounds and 15 assists from Domantas Sabonis - his 15th triple-double of the season - but couldn't match the Cavaliers' prolific perimeter shooting as Cleveland began pulling away early in the second quarter.

Cleveland scored five straight points to stretch its lead to 46-36 less than two minutes into the second quarter and went into the half owning a comfortable 74-59 advantage behind Mitchell's 19 points.

The Cavaliers remained up by double digits the rest of the way, with their lead expanding to as many as 29 points late.

Harrison Barnes led Sacramento with 22 points while finishing 6 of 10 from 3-point range. The Kings closed out a seven-game road trip in which they had won five of their first six outings and six of seven overall coming into Monday's clash.

Irving, Doncic lead Mavericks past ailing 76ers

Kyrie Irving and Luka Dončić combined for 42 points in the duo's first appearance together in two weeks to propel the Dallas Mavericks to a 118-102 win over the staggering Philadelphia 76ers.

Irving racked up 23 points on 10-of-17 shooting to go along with eight assists in his return from a six-game absence caused by a sprained right thumb. Doncic had 19 points and eight assists to help Dallas end a two-game skid and deal the ailing 76ers their sixth loss in seven games.

It was just the 23rd time in the Mavericks' 50 games this season they had a healthy Irving and Doncic together in the lineup.

Playing their third straight game without reigning NBA MVP Joel Embiid, who will undergo left knee surgery and is out indefinitely, the Sixers received 19 points from Kelly Oubre Jr. and 17 from Tobias Harris.

All-Star Tyrese Maxey, Philadelphia's second-leading scorer behind Embiid, had 15 points but was just 6 of 16 from the field.

The 76ers did manage to lead 33-26 after one quarter and 57-53 at the half, but Doncic hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 3:57 left in the third quarter to spark an 8-2 run that gave the Mavericks a 77-72 edge near the end of the period.

Dallas then dominated the fourth quarter, outscoring the 76ers by a 41-28 margin with its bench providing most of the offence, as reserves Jaden Hardy and Grant Williams each recorded 10 points in the final 12 minutes. 

Leonard's 36 points help Clippers cap trip with win over Hawks

Kawhi Leonard scored 13 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter as the Los Angeles Clippers outlasted the Atlanta Hawks and completed a successful road trip with a 149-144 victory.

James Harden added 30 points and 10 assists as he and Leonard powered Los Angeles to a ninth win in 10 games. The Clippers went 6-1 on an 11-day trek away from Crypto.com Arena while the venue hosted the Grammy Awards. 

In a fast-paced fourth quarter that saw both teams combine for 90 points, the Clippers outscored Atlanta by a 21-10 margin over a late stretch to move ahead for good.

Leonard began the run with a putback of his own miss that gave Los Angeles a 124-123 lead with 4:52 left, and Harden capped it when he was fouled after hitting a 26-foot jumper with 1:06 to go. He made the free throw to complete the 4-point play and extend the margin to 143-133.

The Hawks put forth a late rally and got to within 147-144 on Bogdan Bogdanović's 3-pointer with 26.7 seconds remaining, but Harden sunk two free throws on the ensuing possession to keep Atlanta at bay.

De'Andre Hunter had 27 points and seven rebounds off the bench to lead Atlanta, which had a four-game winning streak snapped. Trae Young finished with 25 points and 12 assists in the loss. 

 

The Memphis Grizzlies got career-best scoring performances from Vince Williams Jr. and GG Jackson to overcome a slew of injured players and spoil Draymond Green's return to the Golden State Warriors' lineup in Monday's 116-107 win.

Williams amassed 24 points and seven rebounds and Jackson contributed 23 points off the bench on a night Memphis was without three of its top four scorers for the season in Ja Morant, Desmond Bane and Marcus Smart.

Both players recorded eight fourth-quarter points as the Grizzlies pulled away late to halt a two-game losing streak and hand the reeling Warriors an eighth loss in 11 games.

Green had seven points and seven rebounds in 24 minutes in his first appearance in just over a month. The former NBA Defensive Player of the Year had just completed serving an indefinite NBA suspension for striking Phoenix Suns centre Jusuf Nurkic in the face on Dec. 12.

The Warriors owned a 91-90 lead following Stephen Curry's go-ahead 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter, but Memphis responded with a 16-5 run to break the game open. 

Jackson, who finished 5 of 8 from 3-point range, had two triples during the surge, which Luke Kennard capped with a 3-pointer to give the Grizzlies a 106-96 advantage with 7:20 left.

Golden State never got closer than seven points behind the rest of the way.

Curry led the Warriors with 26 points and Jonathan Kuminga delivered 20 points and 11 rebounds off the bench.

Mavericks down rival Pelicans behind big games from Irving, Hardaway

Kyrie Irving and Tim Hardaway Jr. each eclipsed the 40-point mark while rallying the Dallas Mavericks to a 125-120 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans, a win that created a two-way tie atop the Southwest Division between the teams.

The Mavericks overcame a 10-point deficit late in the third quarter and another absence from superstar Luka Dončić to avenge Saturday’s 118-110 home loss to the Pelicans.

Irving and Hardaway more than made up for Doncic missing a third straight game with a sprained ankle. Irving scored 24 of his 42 points in the second half, while Hardaway had 11 of his season-high 41 points during a fourth quarter in which Dallas outscored New Orleans by a 33-21 margin.

The Pelicans held a 111-104 lead with seven minutes left before Dallas took control with a 17-4 run. Hardaway hit back-to-back 3-pointers during the pivotal spurt, the second of which gave the Mavericks a 112-111 edge with 4:16 remaining.

Jalen Green’s 3-pointer with 1:27 left to play extended Dallas’ advantage to 121-115, though New Orleans answered with five straight points to cut its deficit to one with 17.7 seconds remaining.

Irving then hit two free throws on the ensuing possession, and after the Pelicans’ Brandon Ingram missed a potential game-tying 3-point attempt, Maxi Kleber made two foul shots to seal the win and pull Dallas even with New Orleans in the standings.

Zion Williamson led the Pelicans with 30 points and CJ McCollum had 23 in the loss, though Ingram went just 3 of 14 from the field while finishing with 12 points.

Jazz extend winning streak with rout of Pacers

Lauri Markkanen put up 32 points and 10 rebounds as the resurgent Utah Jazz continued their recent winning ways with a 132-105 rout of the short-handed Indiana Pacers.

The Jazz cruised to their sixth consecutive victory behind the hot shooting of Markkanen and Collin Sexton, who went 11 of 17 from the field while scoring a season-high 30 points to go along with five assists. Markkanen made 10 of 15 field goal attempts and was a perfect 10 for 10 from the foul line.

After getting off to a 7-16 start, Utah has won 15 of its last 19 games to move up to ninth place in the Western Conference.

The Pacers lost their second in a row while playing a fourth straight game without star point guard Tyrese Haliburton, out with a hamstring injury. Indiana was also without two other key contributors in guard Bruce Brown and 3-point specialist Aaron Nesmith due to injuries.

Indiana's depleted lineup proved to be no match, as the Jazz took a 33-26 lead after one quarter and increased it to 64-50 at half-time behind 17 points from Sexton and 15 from Markkanen.

Utah maintained a double-digit advantage the rest of the way, with its lead swelling to 29 points in the final stages.

Buddy Hield and Andrew Nembhard each had 14 points to lead Indiana.

 

Bobby Portis and Giannis Antetokounmpo combined to score 20 straight points during a 25-0 run midway through the first half and the Milwaukee Bucks coasted to a 135-102 rout of the NBA-leading Boston Celtics on Thursday.

Portis finished with 28 points and Antetokounmpo added 24 while both players had 12 rebounds. Damian Lillard had 21 points in his return to the Bucks’ lineup after missing a 132-116 loss to Utah on Monday for personal reasons.

Milwaukee led by as many as 43 points and its 75-38 lead at the break was the fourth-biggest halftime advantage in franchise history.

Payton Pritchard scored 21 points for the Celtics, who missed 16 of their first 17 3-point attempts and finished 9 of 34 from deep. Boston was back in action after beating Minnesota in overtime on Wednesday and looked fatigued.

The Celtics allowed their highest point total of the season and dropped their second straight road game.

Giddey leads Thunder to historic rout

Josh Giddey had a triple-double and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 31 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder matched the fifth-largest rout in NBA history, 139-77 over the Portland Trail Blazers.

Jalen Williams scored 21 points on 9-of-10 shooting and Giddey finished with 13 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds for Oklahoma City, which was on the wrong end of the NBA’s biggest blowout, a 73-point loss to Memphis on Dec. 2, 2021.

The Thunder’s 62-point win shattered their previous record for victory margin of 45 points, set twice during the 2012-13 season.

Portland shot a dismal 27.7 percent from the field and suffered its second-worst loss, having fallen by 65 to Indiana on Feb. 27, 1998.

Irving’s big game lifts Mavericks

Kyrie Irving poured in a season-high 44 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. added 32 to lead the short-handed Dallas Mavericks to a 128-124 win over the New York Knicks.

Josh Green scored 18 points, the last coming on a 3-pointer with 25 seconds left to give Dallas a 124-120 lead. Irving and Hardaway combined to make four free throws in the final 11.1 seconds to seal the win.

Dallas superstar Luka Doncic sat out with an ankle injury and Dereck Lively II and Dante Exum also missed the game.

Julius Randle scored 32 points and Jalen Brunson had 30 for the Knicks, who had a five-game winning streak snapped and lost for the first time since acquiring OG Anunoby from Toronto on Dec. 30.

Luka Doncic hailed an "amazing" night after surpassing Larry Bird with the 60th triple-double of his NBA career, helping the Dallas Mavericks crush the Utah Jazz 147-97 on Wednesday. 

Doncic recorded the first first-half triple-double of his career at American Airlines Center, finishing with 40 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in just three periods as the Mavs dominated from the off.

The four-time All-Star brought up his 60th triple-double with just under a minute remaining in the second quarter, moving past Bird to go ninth outright in the league's all-time rankings.

Asked what it meant to surpass the Boston Celtics icon, Doncic said: "It's pretty amazing. I don't know what to say, honestly. We all know who Larry Bird is, so it's pretty special."

Kyrie Irving added 26 points for Dallas, who had their highest-scoring game of this season and came up two points shy of the highest-scoring game ever in regulation.

Dallas guard Tim Hardaway Jr., who added 17 points in 22 minutes on the court, said after the win: "Luka set the tone with that, knocking down shot after shot after shot… after shot after shot after shot! I thought he was going to go 50-20-20!"

While Dallas snapped a two-game losing streak to improve to 12-8, putting them fourth in the Western Conference standings, the Jazz sit 12th at 7-14 after a performance which left coach Will Hardy furious.

"That was an absolutely horrendous performance," Hardy fumed. 

"It seemed like the Mavericks were moving at a different pace than we were from start to finish."

Luka Dončić notched a triple-double by halftime and finished with 40 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in three quarters in the Dallas Mavericks’ 147-97 rout of the Utah Jazz on Wednesday.

Doncic grabbed a rebound with 71 seconds left in the first half and assisted on Dereck Lively II’s dunk 12 seconds later to complete the 60th triple-double of his career. That moved him past Larry Bird into sole possession of ninth on the career list.

The Dallas superstar had the first 25-point first-half triple-double in NBA history. Doncic shot 14 of 25 from the field and was 6 of 12 from long range.

Kyrie Irving added 26 points for Dallas, which had its highest-scoring game of this season and came up two points shy of the highest-scoring game ever in regulation.

Ochai Agbaji scored 21 points for the Jazz, who played without top scorers Lauri Markkanen (hamstring) and Jordan Clarkson (thigh).

Grizzlies’ Bane goes off as Pistons lose again

Desmond Bane poured in 32 of his career-high 49 points in the second half and the Memphis Grizzlies sent the Detroit Pistons to their 18th straight loss, 116-102.

Detroit’s streak is the longest single-season run in franchise history and the longest in the NBA since the Houston Rockets’ 20-game slide in 2020-21. The Philadelphia 76ers hold the NBA record with a 26-game drought in 2013-14.

Bane shot 19 of 31 from the field and 4-of-8 from 3-point range while sinking all seven free-throw attempts. He added eight assists and six rebounds.

The Pistons held a 69-61 lead midway through the third quarter, but Bane scored the next seven points.

Bojan Bogdanovic scored 22 points for Detroit, which was outscored 34-18 in the fourth quarter.

Embiid drops 50 in 76ers’ win

Joel Embiid scored a season-high 50 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead the Philadelphia 76ers to a 131-126 victory over the Washington Wizards.

Embiid hit the 50-point mark for the sixth time in his career, falling nine points short of his career best set on Nov. 13, 2022, against Utah.

He was 19 of 24 from the floor with a 3-pointer on two attempts and 11 of 13 from the foul line. He also had seven assists and six turnovers in just over 38 minutes.

Tyrese Maxey added 26 points as the 76ers averted a third straight loss.

Jason Kidd claimed Luka Doncic is "taken for granted" before he walked out of his press conference following the Dallas Mavericks' win over the Houston Rockets.

The Mavericks, whose owner Mark Cuban is reportedly close to selling a major stake in the franchise, beat the Rockets 121-115 on Tuesday to prevent Houston from advancing in the NBA's in-season tournament.

Doncic, who played just three days after sustaining a thumb sprain, had 41 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, playing a key role at both ends of the court.

"Sometimes we take him for granted, and we shouldn't," said Kidd. "He's about winning, too. It just happens that he's a walking triple-double.

"Tonight, he had some great looks, but I think he's not looked upon, or you guys haven't really talked about his defense. He's competing defensively. He's taking the challenge.

"But again, when you're that good, someone has to pick at something. Unfortunately, you guys don't see the game totally all the time but he's competing defensively.

"For him to get on the floor, it just shows that he's all about winning, too."

Defiance was a theme of Kidd's post-game news conference, as the coach lashed out at reporters for being overly critical of the time it has taken Kyrie Irving and Doncic to form a formidable partnership.

"Maybe it's the things that you guys thought should have happened day one. It takes time – failing is alright, it's not a bad thing to fail for a pro athlete, as you can learn and get better from it," he said.

"Those two are the best in the world and we feel very comfortable with those two having the ball. Sometimes it goes in, sometimes it doesn't – and we learn from it.

"Write some positive s***. It's alright to write positive stuff, people will read positive s***. You don't have to be negative, the world's already negative enough. Let's see some positive stuff on positive people who are doing their job on a nightly basis."

Irving finished with 27 points, with 22 of those coming in the second half.

"Yeah, he can go off [at] anytime," Doncic said of Irving.

"There were a couple of insane layups, which isn't insane for us because we see it all the time. But his play has been amazing, and his leadership has been amazing. We are just happy to have him on our team."

Giannis Antetokounmpo poured in 40 points and Damian Lillard added 27 to lead the Milwaukee Bucks to a 132-125 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday in a marquee matchup featuring superstars.

Antetokounmpo shot 18 of 26 from the field and grabbed 14 rebounds to go with seven assists, as he bounced back from scoring 16 points Friday at Charlotte.

Pat Connaughton scored 16 points, including a 3-pointer with 67 seconds left to extend the Bucks’ lead to 130-125.

Kyrie Irving scored 39 points and Luka Dončić had 35 with nine boards and nine assists. The duo combined to shoot 31 for 54 from the floor.

 Gilgeous-Alexander scores 40 in Thunder’s OT win

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 40 points and Chet Holmgren has his best game as a pro with 36 points, 10 rebounds and five assists as the Oklahoma City Thunder handed the Golden State Warriors their sixth straight loss, 130-123 in overtime.

Andrew Wiggins sank a 3-pointer with three seconds left in regulation to put Golden State up 117-114, but Holmgren’s 3 with one second remaining forced overtime.

The Thunder outscored the Warriors 13-6 in the extra period, with Gilgeous-Alexander scoring eight straight points.

Wiggins finished with 31 points and Stephen Curry had 25 in his return from a right knee injury, but Golden State dropped to 1-6 on its home court.

 

Bulls rally to end Heat’s winning streak

DeMar DeRozan hit a key basket late and the Chicago Bulls overcame a 21-point deficit for a 102-97 victory, ending the Miami Heat’s seven-game winning streak.

Chicago fell behind by double digits for the third straight game and trailed 22-1 midway through the first quarter but managed to rally to end a three-game skid.

DeRozan scored 23 points and his 18-foot fadeaway with 22 seconds left put the Bulls ahead for good.

Jimmy Butler had 25 points for Miami, which didn’t trail until the game’s final minute. He missed a pair of 3-pointers in the final seconds.

Luka Doncic amassed 35 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists to help the Dallas Mavericks continue their strong start to the NBA season with Monday's 125-110 road win over the slumping Memphis Grizzlies. 

Coming off a 49-point effort in a win over the Brooklyn Nets on Friday, Doncic followed up by making 6 of 12 attempts from 3-point range and going 11 of 22 overall from the field to lead the way as the Mavericks improved to 3-0.

Derrick Jones added 22 points on 7-of-10 shooting and Tim Hardaway Jr. had 21 points on a night Dallas played without its other star guard, Kyrie Irving, due to a left foot sprain.

Memphis, which had the Western Conference's second-best record at 51-31 last season, fell to 0-4 despite 30 points each from Jaren Jackson Jr. and Desmond Bane. The Grizzlies also got 23 points and nine assists from Marcus Smart in a losing cause.

The short-handed Grizzlies have opened the season without a pair of starters in All-Star Ja Morant and center Steven Adams. Morant is serving a 25-game suspension by the NBA for conduct detrimental to the league, while Adams is not expected to play in 2023-24 after recently undergoing knee surgery.

 

Jokic powers 4-0 Nuggets past Jazz

Nikola Jokic recorded the 107th triple-double of his illustrious career with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists to lead the unbeaten Denver Nuggets to a 110-102 win over the Utah Jazz.

Jokic made 12 of 16 field-goal attempts and added a pair of blocks while tying LeBron James and Jason Kidd for fourth on the NBA's all-time list in triple-doubles. 

Denver also got an efficient shooting night from Aaron Gordon, who finished 12 of 16 from the field while compiling 21 points and seven rebounds. Jamal Murray chipped in 18 points and 14 assists as the defending NBA champions moved to 4-0.

Lauri Markkanen paced Utah with 27 points, 14 rebounds and five assists, while Walker Kessler tallied 22 points on 10-of-11 shooting along with 13 rebounds.

The Jazz led for just 16 seconds and trailed by as many as 17 points to fall to 1-3.

 

Curry's hot hand sparks Warriors' rout of Pelicans

Stephen Curry drained seven 3-pointers and finished with 42 points as the Golden State Warriors continued their recent roll with a 130-102 rout of the New Orleans Pelicans.

With long-time backcourt mate Klay Thompson unavailable with a sore right knee, Curry carried the Warriors' offence by going 15 of 22 from the floor and 7 of 13 on 3-point tries. The two-time NBA MVP added five assists to help the Warriors to a third straight victory following a season-opening loss to the Phoenix Suns.

Curry has now made 24 3-pointers during the Warriors' 3-1 start, the most by any player through four games of a season in NBA history. 

Moses Moody started in place of Thompson and scored 13 points, with Chris Paul and rookie Trayce Jackson-Davis also contributing 13 points off the bench in a game Golden State broke open in the second half.

The Warriors held a slim 59-57 advantage at half-time before outscoring the Pelicans by a 39-21 margin in the third quarter.

New Orleans had a two-game winning streak to begin the season snapped while playing without second-leading scorer Brandon Ingram, who was held out with a sore right knee.

Zion Williamson and CJ McCollum led the Pelicans with 19 points each.

 

It didn’t take long for some of the NBA’s top free agents to come off the board.

Point guard Fred VanVleet is leaving the Toronto Raptors after agreeing with the Houston Rockets on a three-year maximum contract totalling $130million, according to multiple media outlets.

The NBA's negotiating period began Friday at 6 p.m. EDT. Deals will not be made official until the end of the league's annual moratorium on July 6.

Undrafted out of Wichita State, VanVleet broke out during the Raptors’ 2019 title run and was a coveted prize in this year’s free agent class.

VanVleet averaged 19.3 points and a career-high 7.2 assists last season.

The Rockets entered this free agency period with the most salary cap room in the NBA, an estimated $68million.

The Raptors responded by adding Dennis Schröder on a reported two-year, $26million deal as they look to build around Pascal Siakam and Scottie Barnes. Toronto was also able to retain center Jakob Poeltl on a four-year, $80million deal.

Irving stays paired with Dončić

Kyrie Irving has agreed to a contract to remain with the Dallas Mavericks and stay paired with superstar Luka Dončić, multiple media outlets reported Friday at the dawn of free agency.

The deal is reported to be worth $126million over three seasons, with a player option for the final year.

The Mavericks acquired Irving at last season’s trade deadline for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith and draft compensation, but Irving reportedly explored other options in free agency.

Irving had been eligible for a maximum contract of up to five years and $272million with Dallas, but he landed at a shorter deal after playing about 40 games per year over the last four seasons.

The Mavericks also came to terms with sharp-shooting guard Seth Curry on a two-year deal.

Blazers keep Grant on 5-year deal

As a busy NBA offseason moves forward, Damian Lillard and his future with the Portland Trail Blazers continue to steal the spotlight.

Forward Jerami Grant and the Trail Blazers agreed on a five-year, $160million deal to keep him in Portland, multiple media outlets reported Friday.

The implications of Grant’s new deal on Lillard’s situation remain unclear, but a total tear-down to build solely around No. 3 overall pick Scoot Henderson appears less likely with Grant signed through the 2027-28 season.

Acquired from the Detroit Pistons for a draft pick a year ago, Grant averaged 20.5 points and 4.5 rebounds in 63 games with the Trail Blazers last season.

Even after retaining Grant, Portland projects to be about $15million under the luxury tax threshold, with a key decision still to come on restricted free agent Matisse Thybulle.

Draymond Green staying with Warriors

The Golden State Warriors kept their core intact, agreeing with Draymond Green on a new four-year, $100million contract, according to multiple media outlets.

Green had declined a $27.6million player option earlier this offseason.

An 11-year NBA veteran, Green has spent his entire career with the Warriors, winning four championships and being named to an All-Defensive Team eight times.

Bucks retain Middleton on 3-year deal

The Milwaukee Bucks also kept a key player from a championship team, agreeing with Khris Middleton on a three-year contract worth $102million.

Earlier this offseason, Middleton turned down a player option for next season at $40million.

Middleton, a three-time All-Star, helped the Bucks win a title in 2021. A right knee injury limited him to 33 games last season.

Veteran center Brook Lopez remains an unrestricted free agent.

Kuzma cashes in with Wizards

Kyle Kuzma became one of the big winners early in free agency, agreeing with the Washington Wizards on a four-year, $102million deal.

Kuzma’s contract comes after he turned down a $13million player option earlier this offseason.

After making $13million in each of the last two seasons, Kuzma will make $22.8million next season.

Kuzma is coming off a career year in which he averaged 21.2 points and 7.2 rebounds for the Wizards.

Johnson gets $108M from Brooklyn

The Brooklyn Nets and restricted free agent Cam Johnson have agreed on a new four-year contract worth $108million.

A key part of the trade that sent Kevin Durant to the Phoenix Suns last season, Johnson scored a career-high 15.5 points per game last season, including 16.6 per game in 25 contests with the Nets.

Brown leaves Denver for Indiana

After helping the Denver Nuggets win their first NBA title, Bruce Brown is headed to the Indiana Pacers on a two-year, $45million contract.

Brown played a key role for the Nuggets off the bench, averaging a career-high 11.5 points during the regular season, plus 12 points per game on 51.1-percent shooting in the playoffs.

Vincent headed to Lakers

Also cashing in on a strong postseason run was Gabe Vincent, who left the Miami Heat for the Los Angeles Lakers on a three-year, $33million deal.

The undrafted guard averaged 12.7 points and shot 37.8 percent from 3-point range during Miami’s run to the NBA Finals.

The NBA’s top free agent is already off the board.

Kyrie Irving has agreed to a contract to remain with the Dallas Mavericks and stay paired with superstar Luka Dončić, multiple media outlets reported Friday.

The deal is reported to be worth $126million over three seasons, with a player option for the final year.

The NBA's negotiating period began Friday at 6 p.m. ET. Deals will not be made official until the end of the league's annual moratorium on July 6.

The Mavericks acquired Irving at last season’s trade deadline for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith and draft compensation, but Irving reportedly explored other options in free agency.

Irving had been eligible for a maximum contract of up to five years and $272million with Dallas, but he landed at a shorter deal after playing about 40 games per year over the last four seasons.

Irving accepting less than his maximum eligible contract opens up some or all of the non-taxpayer midlevel exception, up to $12.4million, for Dallas to use on role players.

While the Mavs were determined to keep a co-star to pair with Doncic, some have questioned the viability of the fit.

Dallas finished the season 9-18 after acquiring Irving and missed the playoffs. Irving averaged 27 points, five rebounds and six assists in 20 games with the Mavericks last season.

After helping the Cleveland Cavaliers win the 2016 NBA title, Irving has morphed into one of the more enigmatic players in basketball. His stints with the Cavs and Nets both ended with trade demands.

Irving has played 671 career games since being drafted No. 1 overall in 2011, averaging 23.4 points, 3.9 rebounds and 5.7 assists.

Dallas Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison is confident about re-signing Kyrie Irving despite the side's disappointing late-season slide that saw them miss the playoffs.

The Mavs endured a 7-18 run to end the season, missing the play-in tournament altogether with an 11th-place finish in the Western Conference.

That came after they traded in Irving in February to become a championship contender. The All-Star guard quickly asserted he would not discuss a contract extension publicly following the trade.

Irving is eligible to sign for as much as $272 million over five years at the Mavs, or around $202m for years at another franchise, leading to questions about his future.

Harrison met with Irving on Monday for his exit interview after the Mavs' season ended on Sunday.

"I think the things that he said along the way about how he feels here, how he feels appreciated, how he feels accepted and allowed to be himself - those are the things that he said kind of consistently," Harrison said.

"That's what gives me the optimism that he wants to be here."

The Mavs struggled for synergy in their backcourt with Irving alongside Luka Doncic following the trade, leading to talk that the star-studded pairing is not worth persisting with.

"I think the two work together," Harrison said. "I think Luka and Kai work together.

"I think when we have that talented of a player - that talented of two players - I think they work together.

"I really think it's the players around them… kind of knowing their role with having those two guys out on the floor at the same time. I think that's the thing that we need to work on."

Harrison was also bullish about Doncic's long-term future, with the Slovenian offering assurance after Sunday's game saying he is happy in Dallas.

"Well, I take his words for it," Harrison said. "He says he wants to be here.

"He's under contract, so I don't go to sleep at night worried about, 'is Luka going to be a Maverick?' Because he is a Maverick, and he's under contract.

"Obviously, if that changes, then we'll have to reevaluate it. But I think our job really to keep Luka happy, if you will, is surrounding him by the right players to help him win. And I think Luka's a talent that deserves that."

Dallas Mavericks' All-Star guard Luka Doncic moved to dispel speculation about his long-term future with the franchise, insisting he is happy where he is.

Reports emerged suggesting Doncic could evaluate his future with the Mavericks after they missed the 2022-23 playoffs with their first losing season (38-44) since the Slovenian's rookie year with Dallas.

That came despite the March trade for Kyrie Irving in an effort to make them championship contenders, yet they struggled with a miserable 7-18 run end to the season.

Doncic previously acknowledged publicly that he has been frustrated by their slide, but claimed that was natural given their poor results.

The guard signed a $207million contract extension in August 2021 keeping him tied with the Mavs until 2027, but players have opted out of long-term deals in the past.

Dallas owner Mark Cuban said this week that the Mavs had to "earn" Doncic's loyalty for him to spend his entire career with them.

The Slovenian cooled the concerns after the Mavs' season ended with a 138-117 loss to the San Antonio Spurs.

"I'm happy here, so there's nothing to worry [about]," Doncic told reporters.

"I saw the report. I don’t know who, somebody said I was going to request a trade. It was funny as I didn’t know it was true. I didn’t say it."

Doncic said he hoped for offseason personnel changes to bolster the Mavs line-up, although he declined to comment on any specific player targets. He also endorsed Irving as his backcourt partner despite their struggles since his arrival.

"Something's got to change, for sure," Doncic said. "I mean, last year we went to Western Conference finals. We were having fun. I always talk about the chemistry we had. It was great. But something's got to change for sure."

On Irving, Doncic added: "I think it's a great fit. Obviously people are going to say no [and] look at the results we are having, but like I said, chemistry and relationships takes time. I wish he can still be here."

The Mavs are under NBA investigation after resting a series of key players for their penultimate game against the Chicago Bulls which they lost 115-112, ending their hopes of making the play-in tournament.

Finishing 11th in the West and missing the play-in meant the Mavs finished with the 10th-best lottery odds, which is important as Dallas owe the New York Knicks a top-10-protected pick, prompting the investigation.

"I didn't like that decision," Doncic said. "That's it."

The Dallas Mavericks entered play Friday facing a must-win game to stay in contention for a play-in spot, but decided as an organisation to give up on their playoff dreams this season.

Facing elimination, the Mavericks decided to sit All-Star Kyrie Irving and four other regulars against the Chicago Bulls in a game with draft implications. They ended up going down 115-112 in a game where superstar Luka Doncic only played the first quarter before sitting out the rest of the way.

Dallas needed to win their final two regular-season games and have the Oklahoma City Thunder lose to the Memphis Grizzlies in their final game for the Mavericks to get the 10th seed in the Western Conference.

Despite being alive for the playoffs, the Mavs chose to instead prioritise their potential assets in June's NBA Draft. They had traded their 2023 first-round pick to the New York Knicks back in 2019 as part of the package for Kristaps Porzingis, and placed a top-10 protection on the pick.

It means if their pick this year lands in the top 10, Dallas will get to keep the pick, but if it is 11th or lower it will get sent to New York.

The decision to punt on the rest of this season boils down to the fact that the Mavericks were tied with the Bulls for the 10th-worst record in the NBA at 38-42, but with Friday's loss they greatly improved their chances of landing in the top 10.

Speaking to the media prior to the game, head coach Jason Kidd emphasised that this was not a decision by himself or the players.

"We were fighting for our lives, and understanding this is a situation we're in," he said. "But the organisation has made the decision to change [course].

"So, you know, we have to go by that and that's something that happens. So the guys that are playing, we got to go out there and put our best foot forward, and we talked about that this afternoon.”

When asked if he agreed with the decision, Kidd said: "Those are my bosses – so yes."

Dallas reached the Western Conference Finals last season and appeared primed to make another deep run after pulling off a blockbuster trade for Irving in February, but the team has wilted down the stretch.

The Mavs are just 5-11 when Irving and Doncic play together, and the team are 9-16 since Irving’s debut.

Despite giving their best effort to lose, Dallas led Chicago 91-85 after three quarters as the Bulls rested Zach LaVine, DeMar DeRozan and Patrick Beverley, having already locked up the East's 10th seed.

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