Credit: USA Today Sports – Scanpix
Credit USA Today Sports – Scanpix

Marquese Chriss scored a season-high 15 off the bench to lead the Dallas Mavericks (18-18) to a 95-86 (26-22, 25-17, 22-25, 22-22) win over the Oklahoma City Thunder (13-23) on the road Sunday night.

Player of the Game
Luka  Doncic
EFF
18
Luka Doncic
Points 14
Accuracy 6-14
Rebounds 9
Assists 10

The Mavericks got three key players back after stints in the league's COVID-19 protocol, including star Luka Doncic.

Doncic, playing for the first time since Dec. 10 after missing 10 games due to left ankle soreness and then the NBA's health and safety protocols, had 14 points on 6-of-14 shooting with 10 assists and nine rebounds, falling just shy of what would've been his third triple-double of the season.

Tim Hardaway Jr., who had missed six games, had 15 points also while Maxi Kleber also returned after missing six games.

While the Mavericks got some of their firepower back, the Thunder were without their two top scorers. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is in health and safety protocol while Luguentz Dort was out with left knee soreness.

Without Gilgeous-Alexander and Dort, the Thunder turned to rookie Josh Giddey for offensive production. He led Oklahoma City with 17 points, a season-high 14 assists, and 13 rebounds.

Giddey had flirted with triple-doubles several times this season, reaching double figures in two categories six times, but had yet to reach the mark in three until Sunday. Giddey also tied a season-high with four steals.

The Australian talent became the youngest player in NBA history to put up a triple-double. The 2.03-meter athlete reached a historic mark at the age of 19 years, 2 months, and 23 days. So far, the record has belonged to the Charlotte Hornets prospect LaMelo Ball.

The Mavericks led by as many as 15 before the Thunder trimmed the lead to three with less than four minutes remaining in the third quarter on Giddey's 3-pointer.

Points this season

45%
105,2
Points made: 105,2
Accuracy: 44,9%
Place in standings: 26
Record max: 139
Record min: 75
Best scorer: Luka Doncic

But Dallas responded with seven quick points over just more than a minute to stretch the lead back to double digits.

The Thunder didn't seriously threaten the lead again until cutting it to four in the final minute before Kleber answered with a 3-pointer to put the game away.

While he showed some rust, Doncic still made an impact early, draining the first shot he took -- a stepback 3-pointer from the left-wing.

But the Mavericks were uneven early until they surged to the lead with a 14-2 run late in the first quarter. Hardaway Jr. scored six points during the stretch, and all of Dallas' buckets in the run were assisted while the Thunder were just 1 of 8 with two turnovers.

Mavericks: Tim Hardaway 15 (2/7 3PT), Marquese Chriss 15 (3/3 3PT, 7 REB), Luka Doncic 14 (4/8 2PT, 2/6 3PT, 9 REB, 10 AST, 7 TO), Jalen Brunson 12 (6/11 2PT, 7 AST), Dorian Finney-Smith 10 (1/8 3PT, 6 REB).

Thunder: Josh Giddey 17 (4/11 2PT, 3/5 3PT, 13 REB, 14 AST, 4 STL), Ty Jerome 12 (3/7 2PT, 2/6 3PT), Isaiah Roby 12 (4/4 2PT), Aaron Wiggins 10 (2/7 2PT, 2/3 3PT, 6 REB).

Luka Doncic's performance

How EuroLeague prepared Luka Doncic for the NBA

Josh Giddey's performance

Full game highlights

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2022-01-10
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Oklahoma Thunder
Dallas Mavericks
41%
35/85
Field goals
45%
38/85
44
Rebounds
58
20
Assists
28
11
Steals
9
4
Blocks
3
16
Fouls
12

Best players

Josh  Giddey
17 PTS
7/16 FG
0/0 FT
Tim  Hardaway
15 PTS
5/11 FG
3/3 FT
Josh  Giddey
13 REB
12 DREB
1 OREB
Luka  Doncic
9 REB
9 DREB
0 OREB
Josh  Giddey
14 As
3 TO
36 MIN
Luka  Doncic
10 As
7 TO
31 MIN
Josh  Giddey
35 EFF
36% 2P%
60% 3P%
Luka  Doncic
18 EFF
50% 2P%
33% 3P%