Mavericks spoil Victor Wembanyama’s NBA debut, beat the Spurs 126-119 in the teams’ opener

Luka Doncic had 33 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists and the Dallas Mavericks spoiled the NBA debut of No. 1 draft pick Victor Wembanyama, beating the San Antonio Spurs 126-119 on Wednesday night.

Dallas forced two turnovers in the final minute to preserve the victory. Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving added 22 points and Grant Williams added 17 points in the season opener for both teams.

Devin Vassell had 23 points to lead San Antonio. Keldon Johnson added 17 and Wembanyama had 15 points.

Wembanyama scored nine points in the final seven minutes after struggling with foul trouble in the fourth quarter. The rookie was 6-for-9 from the field and had five rebounds and two assists and a block in 23 minutes.

Doncic was cleared to play an hour before tipoff after being listed as questionable with a left calf sprain, and the All-Star guard played 32 minutes.

Wembanyama dazzled in the preseason, but he never battled foul trouble as he did against the Mavericks. And, Dallas took advantage.

Wembanyama was forced to exit after picking up his fourth foul with 8:37 remaining in the third quarter on a touch foul while attempting to set a pick on Derrick Jones Jr.

The Mavericks took their first lead 37 seconds later at 73-72 on a layup by Dereck Lively II.

Lively had 10 points in the third as Dallas outscored San Antonio 32-23.

Wembanyama returned midway through the fourth quarter and quickly scored seven points to electrify the crowd. His first bucket came on an alley-oop that rolled over the rim, and he punctuated the run with a thunderous dunk.

San Antonio opened quickly, going 6 for 12 on 3-pointers while shooting 62% from the field in the opening quarter.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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