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Dallas Mavericks: Anticipating the 3 biggest rivals of the 2021-22 season

Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Mavericks biggest rival of 2021-2022 season: 3. Denver Nuggets

The Nuggets finished third in the Western Conference last season, and they were five games ahead of Dallas in the standings. Reigning MVP Nikola Jokic and his team have one of the best homecourt advantages in the league, and no team is excited about going to Denver in the postseason.

The Mavs have taken two of the three regular-season meetings against the Nuggets in each of the last two years, and there have been some wild games including an overtime thriller last season where Luka Doncic narrowly missed a 38-point triple-double. Luka was fantastic against the Nuggets last season as he averaged 31.3 points, 13.7 assists, and 8.3 rebounds over the three meetings.

The two teams figure to be battling in the standings again this season and could easily match up in the playoffs. Denver will be without star point guard Jamal Murray for all or most of the regular season after he tore his ACL in April. Will his injury be the difference between the Mavs and Nuggets in the standings?

This rivalry will get going early as two of the three meetings between the teams happen within the first 13 games of the regular season. The Mavericks also have two home games against Denver this year as rivalry should heat up with the two teams battling for position all season long.