First, the schedule:
Mavs/Blazers: Gm 1 - SAT April 16th at 8:30 CST
Gm 2 - TUES April 19th at 8:30 CST
Gm 3 - THURS April 21st at 9:30 CST
Gm 4 SAT April 23rd at 4:00 CST ... The DB.com Mavs Get-Together at ThreeSheets is on! Big prizes, a huge Mavs-lovin' crowd and you … check it out on our ThreeSheets Mavs Party Facebook Page !
Gm 5 (if) Monday, April 25th (Time TBD)
Gm 6 (if) Thursday, April 28th (Time TBD) and
Gm 7 (if) Saturday, April 30 (Time TBD)
Starting at shooting guard for the Dallas Mavericks, number 92, DeShawn Stevenson-- wait, what?
"Things change. And you've got to be judged by performance. I think the last time I said, ‘I'm sticking with this kid' was over a week ago. Some things have changed in that period of time. That's just the way it is . . . Roddy struggled a little bit, and his energy has been down. So, that was it." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"[DeShawn] is so solid, man -- just defensive presence, understands our defensive scheme, being able to knock down open shots, he's not going to get out of his box, he's going to make the right pass, just that person on the court that's just solid. We need more of that." -Tyson Chandler
"It's more of a tougher tone. I always liked him, all season long. When he was starting, when Roddy was out, we had a phenomenal run there in November and December. I'm a big supporter of D-Steve. He's just a rugged 2 guard who can guard 1s, 2s and 3s, so he's versatile. His shot was looking really good early in the season. If he can shoot the ball like that, he's going to be an animal for us in the playoffs." -Dirk Nowitzki
"We feel like when D-Steve's in the starting lineup we feel like we can put him defensively on anybody and switch back and forth from the point guard so that works well and he's a veteran guy and knows what needs to be done and that helped us out big time tonight." -Jason Terry
About getting things going in the second half . . .
"Everything was a little too easy for them in the first half and we talked at halftime how we had to step it up and bring a little more energy and really contest shots. We got into them a little more and made it tougher. We were really rotating well . . . I thought we were a little bit sluggish in the first half defensively. Second half, we really put on a clinic." -Dirk Nowitzki
"We let our guard down a bit. It's easy to say I sat guys in the second half, but they upped their pressure and hit a ton of shots. I don't know how many threes they made in the second half, but they were contested threes. I thought we played with some fight from the first half, but we still gave up 20 and 30 point quarters. That's something I didn't like." -Coach Monty Williams
"The second half is a blueprint for how we're gonna have to play in the playoffs. Read good defense, move the ball and take care of it on offense." -Coach Rick Carlisle
Wow -- Shawn Marion with his 1500th career steal, making him the fifth player in league history with 1500 steals and 1000 blocks . . .
"That's crazy. I've played a lot of games. But that's a helluva accomplishment . . . Hall of Famers and future Hall of Famers." -Shawn Marion
On the Mavs Off the Bench, who collectively scored 55 points . . .
"Not only are we deep, but our depth is crowded with a lot of savvy veterans that have been in the playoffs and have one thing on their minds, and that's winning a championship." -Jason Terry
Regarding the verve and passion of Corey Brewer -- Rodmanesque, maybe?
"I don't want to go that far. Energy wise, he'd run through a brick wall if it got us the ball back, and you can't have enough of those guys. Corey is going to be a great player for us for a long time to come as long as he doesn't break every bone in his body.'' -Mark Cuban
About the, erm, more intense nature of playoff basketball . . .
"That's not physical to me, that's just basketball. That's the way I want to play. That's the way I think you have to play. You don't want to play dirty, but if you're complaining about that maybe you shouldn't be playing. There's going to be physical play in the playoffs. That's what it's all about. The refs let a lot more go." -Coach Monty Williams
Now Dallas Mavericks real life can begin . . .
"We'll see who can get their act together. I mean, if you just look at the records, Memphis, Denver, Oklahoma City and Portland, Las Vegas is probably going to make them favorites. I don't think there is any such thing as an upset in these playoffs." -Mark Cuban
"Our record is 0-0, so it's the first time to four and we're gonna have our hands full in the first round. We have to play attention to the small details if we want a chance to advance. The big thing is we're a veteran ballclub, so we understand what it takes." -Jason Kidd
"Now the fun season starts. We don't know who we're going to play, but we'll be ready no matter who it is and it should be a fun run." - Dirk Nowitzki, before knowing that it's gonna be Portland.