Dallas, TX – The Mavericks were able to provide all of Mavs Nation with a late Christmas present, as they were able to take out the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night. They now must turn their attention to the Milwaukee Bucks as they will look to gain some momentum in a season of ups and downs. The Mavericks have been able to beat the teams located at the lower half of the standings, but have struggled to show any fight against the upper echelon teams. The Bucks are a young team that has struggled throughout the 2015-2016 campaign, but they have shown flashes of potential, like when they handed the Golden State Warriors their only loss.
3 Things To Watch:
1. The Emergence of J.J. Barea
I have the flu, and the only prescription is some more J.J. While the news of Deron Williams timetable for return being unknown is quite scary, Barea has been just that for opposing defenses. His last two games? 22-34 (64.7%) from the floor, including 12-15 from beyond the arc (80%) for 29 points per game. Barea has always been a nuisance for defenses with his ability to attack the basket, but if his shot isn’t falling, players will back off resulting in less of those attempts. His game is clicking right now, which couldn’t come at a better time.
2. The Continued Growth of Dwight Powell
Maybe the Mavericks have found their best young player since Dirk Nowitzki. No, I’m not going all the way there guys, but he is in fact growing into a nice young asset for our Dallas Mavericks. While many of us don’t even like to hear the name of that guy playing in Sacramento, we all were left with a bitter aftertaste following that debacle last season. That was until Powell started to flash his potential at the Summer League, and has been a steady component on the Mavericks roster this season. He had a solid outing (9 points, 6 rebounds) against a big Chicago Bulls front court on Saturday night.
3. Things turning around for Chandler Parsons?
Is this the guy that the Mavericks signed to a 3-year, $46 million deal? No. However, we may all need to pump the brakes on the torches and pitchforks. I’ll admit that I have been a harsh critic of Parsons this season, but as a fan, you tend to forget just how difficult it can be to come back from an injury and surgery as extreme as the Parsons just went through. He is clearly starting to gain some confidence, and along with that confidence is playing more now that his conditioning is coming back. Parsons logged a season high 36 minutes on Saturday. All he did with that was put together a solid 20 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists.
Mavericks: Deron Williams (hamstring)
Pacers: Paul George (illness) Game-Time Decision
Mavericks: Dirk Nowitzki, 17.4
Pacers: Greg Monroe, 15.8
Mavericks: Zaza Pachulia, 10.4 (9th in NBA)
Pacers: Greg Monroe, 9.6
Mavericks: Deron Williams, 5.8
Pacers: Michael Carter-Williams, 5.4
Mavericks: Devin Harris, 1.2
Pacers: O.J. Mayo, 1.4
Mavericks: Dirk Nowitzki, 0.7
Pacers: John Henson, 1.8
How to Watch:
7:30 PM CST on Fox Sports Southwest
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