Mavs Power Points: Dirk To 7, Dallas To 26
The Dallas Mavericks are becoming Rajon Rondo's team in the QB'ing sense ... So it's nice when Rondo struggles in some ways but still contributes to a win.
This is the Rajon Rondo element that is honestly pretty intriguing, and it was on full display Monday. Mavs fans all witnessed Rondo have a field day from the field a few nights ago against his former team, the Boston Celtics. Then, Rondo went 12 of 17, including 5 of 7 from three-point range for a total of 29 points. He added five assists and the Mavs won quite convincingly.
This was the opposite story from the field for Rondo. Rondo made one bucket out of a mind-boggling 13 attempts. This shows that whether his shot his falling or not, his aggressiveness will always be consistent. That's good, we suppose.
He finished with two points, but yet made a loud impact on the game with 14 assists, many of them absolutely gorgeous passes that very few in the league can make. He also led all Mavs guards with 10 rebounds to help the Mavs close out the Brooklyn Nets 96-88 in overtime. The beauty of Rondo's game is that he is versatile enough to where if one aspect of his game isn't clicking, he can just resort to other options and still be very effective.
And even though Rondo struggled to give the Mavs points, the other point guards on the team, J.J. Barea and Devin Harris picked up the slack and added nine points apiece. Which leads to the next Power Point. ...
The Mavs bench outscored the Nets 41-11 for the game. Barea and Harris both contributed nine points each and Charlie Villanueva had a decent shooting night scoring eight points by converting on two three-pointers and another field goal. Greg Smith also had a quiet five points and Richard Jefferson was the man of the night for the Mavs bench, getting in double digits by shooting 4 of 8 from the field for 10 points.
For the Nets, the only scoring they got from the bench was six points from Mirza Teletovic and five points from Alan Anderson.
Don't worry. We're not burying the lead here. We'll have full coverage of Dirk Nowitzki throughout the night and day to commemorate the fact he passed Moses Malone to sit all alone at seventh on the all-time with 27,412 points in his illustrious career. Of course, it wouldn't be vintage Dirk if he didn't do it in style. Leading 93-88 late in overtime, Dirk provided the dagger three-pointer to put the Mavs up by eight with 35 seconds left in the game.
Dirk has now passed Hakeem Olajuwon, Elvin Hayes, and Moses Malone in scoring this year. Next on the list is Shaquille O'Neal with 28,596 points.
"Moses was an unbelievable player,'' Dirk said. "It's been a humbling experience to pass all these all-time greats.''
Dirk may be done passing all-time greats for this year, but he'll get some more guys at some point. Right now, only six human beings can say they scored more points than Dirk Nowitzki in the NBA.
The Mavs edged the Nets by the slimmest of margins in field-goal percentage, shooting 39.4% to the Nets 39.3%. The Mavs, however, did comfortably dominate from beyond the arc, shooting 37% to the Nets measly 12%. The Nets beat the Mavs at the line, shooting 82.6% to the Mavs 63.2%.
Every single active player played double-digit minutes and every starter was over 34 minutes, much of what you would expect from a tight contest that took an extra period to be decided. Among the starters, Monta Ellis lead the team in minutes, logging nearly 39 minutes. (And was so clutch late.) Chandler Parsons followed with almost 38 minutes (exerting himself mostly on the defensive end on a poor shooting night), Rondo with 37, Tyson Chandler with a little over 37 minutes (snagging two huge late boards) and Dirk just under 35 minutes played.
Fish and D-Lord team up as the best in the business at this sort of thing, and today they've done it again, with the inside story on the Mavs' interest in Jermaine O'Neal and Sam Dalembert. With Sam, there are rules. With JO, there is a "kink.''
Read all about it only on DB.com as a Premium Mavs subscriber!
Basketball. Flow, rhythm, motion, whipped along by the shot clock. At its best, it's beautiful. This, for much of the night, was not that. Two teams on the second night of a back to back, neither coming out of the gate looking all that sharp. But in end? When they win, we award a trophy. It's a DB.com tradition and you are a part of it: Vote here for Player of the Game!
The Mavs take their six-game winning streak back to Dallas to host the hot (ever since they dumped Josh Smith) Detroit Pistons Wednesday, January 7th at 7:30 p.m. at the American Airlines Center.
Dallas is 11-0 on the road against Eastern Conference teams and dating back to the end of last season, has won 15 in a row against the Least. More important: at 26-10, the Mavs are, as we write this, in a virtual tie for the division lead and in fourth in the West.
"I'm proud of (the milestone),'' Dirk said, "but more proud that we got the win.''
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