It is a battle of MVP favourites and Giannis Antetokounmpo can lead the Bucks to a big win over Luka Doncic and the Mavericks, says Dave Gray...
"This month Giannis is averaging 29.3 points per game, up seven from December. His shooting percentage has risen by 8% and at the other end he is having more effect on defence."
Dallas Mavericks @ Milwaukee Bucks
Saturday, 00:30 GMT
Live on Sky Sports Arena
Porzingis returns at the right time for Dallas
Luka Doncic was the preseason favourite to win MVP and he is showing why over the first month of the season. He is putting up 27 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists per game and now he gets his sidekick back as Kristaps Porzingis returns to the team after missing the first nine games with a knee injury. He made such a difference to the team. His size is such a mismatch for most teams and his presence can open things up even more for his All Star teammate.
Dallas are so fun to watch, but now they are really learning to win games. They come into this huge game on a four game win streak and going up against the Bucks will be a good test of where they are as a team.
Giannis wants to make it three in a row
Like tonight's opponents, the Bucks got off to a bit of a slow start - by their own very high standards - but are finding their rhythm. The have just one loss since the turn of the year and while Doncic may well be MVP favourite, two time reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo is starting to find his form. Last time out against Detroit he got his second triple double of the season. This month he is averaging 29.3 points per game, up seven from December. His shooting percentage has risen by 8% and at the other end he is having more effect on defence.
Jrue Holiday has been a really nice addition to the line up. He hit double digits for the ninth straight game and as well as Khris Middleton getting off to a strong start, they just look like a more complete team now. There is still some work to be done and they could make some moves, but they are certainly closer than they were this time last year.
Depth an issue for Dallas
The Mavericks have some depth issues with a number of players missing out due to coronavirus protocols and that will really cause them issues against such a strong opponent. Any time you have Doncic in your team you have a shot, but I expect Giannis will want to put on a show in this one. The Bucks are 5-1 at home and can make that 6-1 here with a strong showing.