Whew!!! That was fun wasn’t it? After what happened the other night against Portland, the Mavs (and their fans) needed a pick-me-up win like this one. Below are 3 takeaways from Thursday night’s overtime thriller against the Utah Jazz.
Mavs Must Get Off to Better Starts:
After extending their winning streak to a season-high 4 games, the Dallas Mavericks had lost 2 straight going into Thursday night, with the most recent one being an absolute heartbreaker, as Portland beat Dallas on a last second floater from C.J. McCollum. Things didn’t go well early against the Jazz, as the Mavs found themselves having to claw back from a 21-point 3rd quarter deficit. We all know and have seen what this Mavs team is capable of when they are focused. Going forward, they will need to find a way to put together 48 complete minutes of basketball in the remaining games if they want to secure a spot in this year’s playoffs.
20-Point Comebacks Are Incredible:
Now that the semi-scolding is over, we can all take a moment to truly enjoy what happened after the Mavs went down by 21 points. With 21.2 seconds left in the 4th quarter, Rudy Gobert fouled Dirk Nowitzki before the ball was inbounded. Dirk missed the free throw, but the big key here was that Gobert fouled out of the game. Harrison Barnes proceeded to dunk the Mavs to within 2 points, then on the insuing Jazz possession, Devin Harris forced a turnover with 15 seconds left. Harrison Barnes missed the tying shot from inside of the top of the arc, but with a fortunate bounce off the rim, the ball went straight to Dirk for the game-tying shot that sent the game to overtime. From there, Dallas went on to win 112-105, as Harrison Barnes finished with 31 big points. This was the Mavs first 20-point comeback since February 26, 2016 against the Denver Nuggets.
— NBA.com (@NBAcom) February 10, 2017
Beating Quality Competition:
As up and down as the Mavs have looked this season, it’s been really encouraging to see them take out some really good competition, especially with some of their key guys being injured. Think about this: The Mavs were injured earlier in the season and only have 21 wins. However, some of those wins have been really impressive, as they have beaten the likes of the Cleveland Cavilers (top team in the East), San Antonio Spurs (2-seed in West), Portland Trail Blazers (fighting for 8th seed), Los Angeles Clippers (5-seed in West) and now the Utah Jazz (4-seed in West). You can say what you want to about this Mavericks team, but if they do end up making the playoffs, you can’t say they haven’t been battle tested. Rick Carlisle continues to push the right buttons as we inch closer to the end of the season. The hope is not only that we get to the playoffs, but that we become a thorn in the side for whichever team we would face.
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