It’s been over a month’s time since the Dallas Mavericks had the opportunity play for a fourth consecutive victory. The Mavs host the Houston Rockets tonight in what will be the third game in a row they catch an opponent on its second night of back-to-back games.
The Mavs have done their part in taking advantage of some favorable scheduling. The first two contests of the four-game homestand witnessed the Mavs look like they did early in the year, smart and successful.
Chemistry between Darren Collison and O.J. Mayo fuels the team. As we’ve seen in the recent stretch, when this 25-year-old backcourt duo has it together, the Mavs look awesome. Pushing the tempo is their mojo and it has led Dallas to average 111.3 PPG over the past three.
Imagine this, valuing the basketball and execute proper ball movement equates wins.
It’s true! Okay, no one is surprised. We all knew if Dallas could stop being sloppy and giving the opponent more possessions, things ought to be better. Well during the three-game win streak the Mavs have 79 assists and just 30 turnovers. Makes sense.
Another juicy stat from the Minnesota game on Monday is the Mavs had three players score 20 or more points and Dirk Nowitzki was NOT one of them. Collison led the way with 23 points while Elton Brand and Mayo added 20 apiece. It’s the first time this season that has occurred and as ESPNDallas’ Tim MacMahon stated, the first time a Dirk-less trio achieved the feat since last season when Vince Carter, Shawn Marion and Delonte West did it in Phoenix.
The Rockets come into this one on the heels of a home loss to the Chris Paul-less Los Angeles Clippers. The Clippers took control in the second half and really never felt threatened the rest of the way to a 117-109 victory.
“You can’t (lose at home),” James Harden said. “We’ve got to be better, especially on the defensive end. We’ve got to guard in order to win games. It’s simple.”
Is a breakout game in store for Dirk? As mentioned in the previous Mavs Game Night, the comfort level between Dirk and his teammates has been coming along nicely. However, we haven’t yet witnessed one of those typical Dirk nights where he completely dominates a game. His last game against the Rockets he dropped 35 points. Let’s see what the Big German has for us tonight. I’m expecting 20 or more from him.
The Mavs and Rockets get started at 7:00 p.m. CT and will be broadcasted nationally on ESPN and locally on FSSW.
Make it 4 in a row, Go Mavs!
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