Hey, the Dallas Mavericks haven’t forgot how to win a ball game! Kind of had me scared for a bit especially since at one time they had over a 20 point lead and only won by 6, what’s up with that and also at the end of the game, the Wizards had all bench players; but those players gave their team a spark and the coach stayed with that plan.
A win is a win, but there are still some things that the Mavs need to work on, but they looked better and did better than they have done over the last couple of game. Their field goal percentage was good, their rebounding was definitely better and points in the paint was better, so their is improvement.
Our new scoring phenom, OJ Mayo led the way for the Mavericks with 24 points and not far behind was Chris Kaman with 23 points and 8 rebounds. I guess Rick Carlisle’s decision to start Kama instead of Branden Wright was a good one since it sort of revived him. Jae Crowder finished the night with 12 points off the bench and Elton Brand looked as if he was finally coming to life and had his first double-double of the season with 11 points and 12 rebounds.
It did look as if Dallas is coming together as a team and need to keep that chemistry and momentum going to get through the next several weeks until the return of their All-Star, Dirk Nowitzki. With Shawn Marion still out, Carlisle inserted Dahntay Jones in the starting lineup to see what he can do not just on the offensive end, but the defensive side of his game, which is what he’s most known for and he did not fail.
Jones may not be a scoring machine, but what he brings to a team in defense is great and if you can’t have your best defensive player on the court, then you get the next best and that’s what Jones is. Now not to take anything away from Dahntay, but I will have to give the edge to “the Matrix” when it comes to defense on this team, but Jones did what he was sent to do.
As I said, Dallas did better in the rebounding area and Dallas outrebounded Washington 40-34 and forced 17 turnovers on the Wizards.
Dallas has been shooting the lights out in the three-point category so far this season, but tonight they only attempted 11 and hit on 3, but Washington came to play from behind the arc and it showed as they shot 13 of 27 from downtown.
Jordan Crawford led the Wizard, due to the absence of their leading scorer John Wall, with 21 points on 6 of 11 shooting from the field, 3 of 5 from the three point arc and 6 of 6 from the free throw line. Kevin Seraphin added 16 points, while Cartier Martin scored 14 points on 5 of 6 from the field and 4 of 4 from behind the three point line and A J Price added 11 points of his own on 4 of 7 from the field and connected on 3 of 4 from behind the arc.
Now when you look at the stats of the complete game, Washington actually had the upper hand on Dallas where they did better from the three point line and the free throw line, but Dallas did protect the ball better and only had 13 turnovers.
If Dallas had kept their fire going they had at the beginning, they would have won this game handily, you just need to look at the scores over the quarters. Dallas took the first quarter 23-19 and then blew them out in the second quarter scoring 40-26 and taking a 63-45 halftime lead but then the second half belonged to the Wizards. Washington held Dallas to 22 points which is the same amount of points Washington scored and then they outscored Dallas in the fourth 34-22 which is what almost won them the game.
Also looking at the game, all the starters for this game are new players to the Dallas roster since Wright was replaced by Kaman in the starting center spot, not bad, but they still have a lot of stuff to work on if they want to stay above the .500 mark and they need to do that. Since Dirk and Marion are out, everyone is writing off the Mavericks and they are no where in the good team talk at all and that is terribly upsetting, but Dallas has to prove to everyone that they belong in those talks. Right now the only teams being put up in the forefront are the Clippers, Heat, Knicks, Grizzlies and Spurs, but there again, that’s really the way Dallas likes it.
So where do we go from here, keep it together and get ready to face the Pacers in Indiana on Friday night before going on to Cleveland on Saturday, another back to back on the road.
And with that, I will bid you a good night and say good night and good luck Mavs!