The Dallas Mavericks took on the Milwaukee Bucks in a must-see Saturday primetime matchup. The star-studded duo of Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic had potentially their toughest battle to date as they faced Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard's Bucks.
The two duos left nothing on the court as the Mavericks pairing combined for 74 points in the 132-125 gut-wrenching loss.
Behind Giannis' 40 points, the Bucks would end up taking care of business late in the back-and-fourth affair. Giannis would even tally 15 rebounds and two steals in the effort to wrangle the Mavs.
NBA MVP Power Rankings: Luka Doncic rises, who drops?
Even with the masterclass showing out of Irving, the Mavs proved not to have enough in the tank as they lost a double-digit lead late in the fourth. It came to the detriment of many empty offensive possessions and blown assignments on the defensive end.
It also didn't help that the Mavericks were victim to some loose whistles as there were many fouls drawn not in the Mavs' favor down the stretch. The Bucks shot 20 free throws compared to the Mavericks' 10.
No matter the outcome, fans got what they paid for. For both teams, this could be described as one of the most exciting games of the season. The Mavs continued their brilliant offensive game as they got out in transition and played incredibly quickly, scoring 40 points in the third quarter alone.
Additionally, there was no absence of great basketball from all four stars in this game. MVP candidate Luka Doncic eclipsed with 35 points, nine rebounds, and nine assists, once again just coming up short of a triple-double.
Despite the back-to-back losses, Doncic and the Mavs played some amazing basketball throughout this week. With this in mind, let's take a look at the MVP Power Rankings. How far will Doncic rise? What newcomers enter the top five?
5. Anthony Edwards
Last week's rank: N/A
Before a loss earlier this week to the Phoenix Suns, the Minnesota Timberwolves were rolling on a seven-game winning streak. A large contributor to the Wolves' success was due to their star player Anthony Edwards.
Edwards has led the Wolves with 26 points per game, five assists, and an eye-popping 39 percent from behind the arc. He has even contributed defensively, with just over one steal per contest.
Edwards was a huge contributor to Minnesota's effort to take down the Boston Celtics earlier this year. He would end with a game-high 38 points and nine rebounds, and many in the national media called this his breakout game for the season.
For Edwards' MVP case, it will be critical that the Timberwolves continue on their winning ways. Staying in the win column could be a huge reason Edwards stays high in these power rankings.
The Wolves have a tough stretch ahead of them as they play some fierce competition in the Eastern Conference over the next few games. As it currently stands, the Timberwolves are tied for first in the Western Conference, which is why Edwards lands at five.