Dallas Mavericks

Mavericks Gameday: Dallas will miss Rockets’ Howard

Mavericks guard Devin Harris plays tight defense against Rockets’ Ty Lawson on Nov. 14 in Houston.
Mavericks guard Devin Harris plays tight defense against Rockets’ Ty Lawson on Nov. 14 in Houston. AP

Rockets at Mavericks

7:30 p.m. Friday, American Airlines Center, Dallas

TV: FSSW. Radio: ESPN/103.3 FM; ESPN/1540 AM (Spanish)

Records: Rockets 8-11, Mavericks 11-8

About the Rockets: The Mavericks will catch a break, because Rockets center Dwight Howard will not play due to maintenance on his body. Howard is not yet playing both ends of back-to-backs. He will play Saturday in Houston against Sacramento. … James Harden is second in the NBA in scoring with 29.5 ppg, and also averages 6.7 rebounds, 6.6 assists and 1.89 steals. The league’s Most Valuable Player runner-up last season is shooting only 39.8 percent from the field and only 29 percent from 3-point range. … The Rockets are 4-4 since interim coach J. B. Bickerstaff replaced Kevin McHale, who was fired. That includes wins in three of their past four games.

About the Mavericks: Fresh off a 1-1 split on a West Coast road trip, Dallas will start a two-game East Coast road trip Sunday in Washington after the Interstate 45 matchup with the Rockets. … Zaza Pachulia has been a huge surprise for the Mavericks. He is tied with Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook for second in the NBA in double-doubles with 12. … Guard J.J. Barea will miss his fourth consecutive games with a sprained right ankle. … The Mavericks have three players averaging 30-plus minutes — Deron Williams (32.6), Wesley Matthews (30.2) and Dirk Nowitzki (30.1). … Chandler Parsons and JaVale McGee will be back on the court after missing Tuesday’s game due to maintenance.

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