DONUT 1: Starting tonight in Philly, Dallas continues its climb to what we all hope can be a 47-16 record -- 31 games over .500! -- by March 9, when the sched starts getting more grueling.
This is yet another series of foes that oddsmakers will forecast as Dallas victims. On the slate: At Philly, home against the Pacers and Grizzles, and at Minnesota. After that, starting on March 9, the path gets more bumpy. It's at the Hornets, and then home against the Knicks and Lakers. But first things first … or rather, four things first.
The combined record of the upcoming four foes: 103-135.
That's not to be dismissive of any of them; Philly, Indy and Memphis are all in position to win the seventh or eighth playoff berths in their respective conferences. They ain't tin cans.
And coach Rick Carlisle will attempt to make certain Dallas is dismissive of no one. Of topping the lowly Wizards by six, he says, "We were lucky to get out of here alive.''
But ... 47-16 would be fun. Fun to sit there and look at LA in the rear view mirror ... and maybe be rubbing fenders with the Spurs, too.
DONUT 2: The Dallas Mavericks have exactly zero 20-point wins this season, and that's a common criticism of this club: It can get ahead by 20 but cannot stay there. It points to a probable fact of Mavs life:
"Our margin of error,'' Carlisle says, "is thin.''
The Wizards (not to pick on them) have a pair of 20-point wins.
The Mavs have none.
So how much does it matter?
DONUT 3: I get no indication that Detroit has any willingness to buy out Tayshaun Prince, but I will make two observations about such talk:
First, yes. Dallas would be interested -- EXTREMELY interested -- in winning a bidding war should a transaction like that transpire. And second, yes. Joe Dumars would look like an idiot if a few days after failing to trade Tayshaun for something, he ends up attempting to calm the mutiny by giving him away for nothing.
DONUT 4: George Karl is stealing my schtick.
I like to point out that in pro sports, "there are 30 or so ways to skin the cat.'' That is to say, that even in the copycat mode so many imitators adopt, people are different ... systems can be different ... styles can be different.
And along comes the Nuggets coach arguing that Denver can win even though they are "not going to have a superstar."
Says Karl: "In basketball you can win playing zone. You can win playing slow- down basketball. You can win playing fast. You can win with the 3-ball. You can win with the post-ups. You can win 25 different ways. It seems like everybody likes to be creative on how to win a basketball game. But (it seems) there's only one way to win a championship in the NBA, and that's with superstars. Why can't you win with 10 really good players? ... Why can't that win a championship?"
George, the Mavs would like to think that you are onto something there. That Nowitzki & The Dirkettes fit your profile plus some.
But Karl's phrasing avoids the right question. It's not CAN? It's WILL?
DONUT 5: Now, do you need to possess emotional security to win a championship?
That's the next test for LeBron, who engaged in a Twitter war with former teammate Boobie Gibson because Boobie had the audacity at his own Cleveland-staged birthday party to proclaim himself (during a toast) 'the new king of Cleveland.''
This hurt LeBron's feewings. Because, you see, LeBron is the king of Cle ... wait a minute. Didn't he abdicate that throne?
DONUT 6: I noted on the air the other night that Jason Kidd's work in Washington might've been an all-timer in the sense that he had so much impact in the win, and such a full boxscore ... while only taking (and making) one shot. And now Elias has done some math:
Kidd contributed 14 assists and eight rebounds and according to the Elias Sports Bureau this is the only time in NBA history that a player ha collected that many assists and that many rebounds in a game in which he had a combined total of no more than one shot from the floor and the foul line.
When we say "Kidd can impact a game without scoring,'' we're not kidding. It's all-time stuff.
DONUT 7: If Charlie Sheen (and his ilk) are really so buoyed by their own glee, confidence and self-love, and really so immune to criticism, why are they calling radio shows and holding press conferences and offering "exclusives'' to announce their buoyancy, gleefulness, confidence, self-love and immunity? If they don't care ... why do they CARE?
And if you are truly so buoyed, gleeful, confident, loving and immune, why are you making racist jokes and ripping AA?
DONUT 8: Please join our Dallas Mavericks FISH Facebook Page ... prizes to be won, fun to be had, friends to be made! C'mon! I seem nice!
DONUT 9: Finally. A Spur is enduring an injury.
It's Tony Parker with a calf strain. Two to four weeks, they say, and if it's closer to the latter, it means Parker misses the Spurs-Mavs showdown at the AAC on March 18.
We'll see if the Spurs handle this any differently than Dallas handled its injury problems with Dirk ... Roddy B ... Caron ... Tyson ...
DONUT 10: TV tonight: Fish and Ro and Followill and the gang on FS Southwest beginning at 5:30 with the pregame leading up to Mavs-at-Philly. The 76ers have inched above .500 at 30-29 and have won four in a row. Be there!
DONUT 11: Hottest shirt among Mavs fans? I would say it's the Fish-tested, Dirk-approved 'TAKE THAT WIT CHEW!' from the DB.com Store!
You will notice ... even Ro Blackman digs the 'TAKE THAT WIT CHEW!' shirt!
DONUT 12: We give you some solid reasons here for the Mavs pursing NYK buyout guy Corey Brewer. But I'll give you another one: I don't like the idea of San Antonio having him.