Tuesday Mavs Donuts: Time For The Lid
The Dallas Mavericks has now developed a handy little "tell'': When the Mavs don't score 100 points, they lose.
The mark is 0-4, and we're deep enough into the season now that it can't be excused away by who the opponent was that night, or which Mav was injured or off that night, or second-night-of-a-back-to-back stuff. This is about finding a way to win when "Run DMC'' isn't fully clicking, and going forward, finding a way to win when the opponent has shut-down skills (Saturday when the Spurs come in here?) or when the circumstance suggests tightening and slowing (namely, the NBA Playoffs).
In fact, the Mavs have now allowed 100-plus points in 11 straight outings, meaning the last time Dallas' defense put the lid on anybody regarding the century mark was on Nov. 22, against the Rockets -- a game in which Dallas allowed just 95 but scored just 92.
Our man Coop notes that this is Dallas' longest such streak since 1996. ... and that in every Mavs win this season, they've scored 105 or more points.
A good time to exert some defensive energy and flex some defensive muscle? That would be tonight in New York, against a Knicks team that is 5-21 and No. 27 in the NBA in points scored per game at 94.
I'll be on FOX Sports Southwest helping to bring you the Mavs game tonight at 6:30 with "MAVS Live'' and then the 7 p.m. tipoff at the Knicks. and then we'll do it again Wednesday at Detroit, "MAVS Live'' at 7 and then the tipoff at 7:30. (And no second-night-of-a-back-to-back excuses will be allowed there, either.)
Join us for the pregame and stay for the postgame, too, featuring Dana Larson, Bob Ortegel and yours truly!
What do you get from just one All-Access Practice Report as a Premium subscriber, as in this feature?
*Monta Ellis tells me why he's channeling Mike Singletary.
*Carlisle goes "Prickly Rick'' ... and the reasons for it.
*Dirk doesn't want to talk about TY in NY ... he just knows Dallas needs to win tonight.
*Charlie V refused to let Aminu win a 3-point-shooting duel.
Dirk engages in a weird warm-up ... and a funny "marathon'' contest.
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Rick Carlisle pushed a right button in one way over the weekend when Chandler Parsons (sore back) couldn't go against the Warriors. Coach plugged Richard Jefferson into the starting lineup and RJ finished with 13 points and 13 rebounds for his first double-double since Dec. 2010 while with San Antonio. Those 13 rebounds are most in a game for Jefferson since he had 16 with the Nets in Jan. 2006
To be frank, we'd like to see more of Aminu in this spot -- if this spot continues to be available. (We will monitor Parsons' status throughout the day, of course). But it's hard to argue with Rick's decision ... and hard to argue with RJ's production.
So, the idea of Jermaine O'Neal to the Mavs? Ray Allen? Rashard Lewis? we touch on the Guns for Hire concept and provide links to more info here.
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Oh, and guess what? Fish is opening a bar! It's called "THE MAVERICK''! Sports, live music, burgers, all with a Texas flavor ... come LIKE us on Facebook and then swing on in!
The Mavs have yet to beat a top-eight team in the West standings. Yet they hover right around tied for the second most wins in the entire NBA ... good enough for right around No. 7 in the absurdly deep Western Conference.
The saving grace? The Mavs are 10-2 vs. the woeful East. They've played the most games vs. the East of any team in the West, a suggestion that Dallas' schedule so far has been cushy. But heck, I'll take it ... along with the hope that the Beasting of the East continues in New York and Detroit.
"We're going to find out what we're made of this week," Rick Carlisle said going into "The Week That Wasn't.'' After watching this team get Grindhoused by the Grizzlies and drowned by the Splash Brothers, we hope last week wasn't that significant, as Jonny Auping reviews here.
A strategic nugget from last week's loss at Memphis: That was the rare game in which the Mavs failed to record a dunk. Dallas is still No. 1 in the NBA in dunks and No. 4 in the NBA in points in the paint. So I'm watching the Grizzlies' success in this area and watching them stick with rollers to the basket, covering the TY's and the B-Wright's so they simply cannot get launched.
And here comes the chess game.
If teams don't try that, Dallas will continue to have success at the rim. If and when teams do copy it, Dallas needs to counterpunch with the ball-handler keeping it to the rim, hitting the mid-range shot or re-setting the offense and trying again.
Monta Ellis is often that guy in the middle of the decision-making -- and in the middle of the traffic, exhibiting the ball-handling skills he worked so hard on last summer. Monta from mid-range needs to be a very real weapon as the Mavs counterpunch ...
Though I'd prefer defenses not try to borrow from Memphis. Dallas dunks are much more fun!
"Most nights,'' B-Wright tells me of defenses' strategies to stop the opp, "it's pick-your-poison. Either way teams defend it, we can still make it work.''
Are the Pistons ready to fire-sale big man Greg Monroe? And if so, are the Mavs interested? If you are a Mavs Premium Subscriber, you are about to find out about the interesting scoop!
"We got to win. That’s really all it boils down to." -- Dirk Nowitzki.
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