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The First Noel: Mavs Look To Tame Grizzlies, New Face Among Starters

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Despite falling against Atlanta in its last appearance, Dallas looks to rebound tonight in a southwest divisional showdown against the Memphis Grizzlies tonight at 7:30 p.m. from the American Airlines Center.



Prior to the loss, the Mavs logged victories against a surging Miami Heat team and the new-look New Orleans Pelicans bolstered by the trade deadline acquisition of Demarcus Cousins.



Tonight the Mavs are matched against the Grizzlies, bolstered by a grit-and-grind trio of Marc Gasol, Mike Conley and Zach Randolph. Memphis is fresh off a pair of wins against the Pheonix Suns and Denver Nuggets.



Here’s a quick breakdown of the Grizzlies:


Record: 36-25


Last: Defeated Pheonix, 130-112 on Feb. 28


Against Mavs: Dallas holds a comfortable, 59-24 all-time lead against Memphis.



What’s beef?



After receiving more than $30 million in salary for two years of service, Chandler Parsons returns to American Airlines Center yet again. During his stint with Dallas, the 6-foot-9 swingman posted averages of 14.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game while shooting 47 percent from the field and 39.5 percent beyond the three-point line.



The Mavericks boasted a record of 94-80 over his two seasons, including a pair of first-round playoff exits. It wasn’t the smoothest separation but the Mavs were rewarded for not extending Parsons with the acquisition of Harrison Barnes. Barnes currently leads Dallas in points per game (20.2) while maintaining the highest player efficiency rating (17.5) within the starting lineup. Barnes led all scorers with 15 points in a loss against Memphis earlier this season, despite struggling from the field. The comparisons should make for interesting play-by-play dialogue and will be an intriguing follow throughout the contest. Parsons is currently averaging 6.1 points over 19.5 minutes in 30 starts for the Grizzlies.



Keep an eye out



The combination of Seth Curry and Yogi Ferrell continues to be an curious development within the Mavs’ backcourt. Ferrell was initially forced into the starting role, but his production helped secure a two-year deal for the undrafted Indiana guard. He’s maintained his role as others have begun to fade. The departure of Deron Williams all but guaranteed this Mavs’ backcourt will continue to blossom while learning on-hand from crafty veterans such as Devin Harris and J.J. Barea.



Making his way downtown



Walking fast, hopefully, Nerlens Noel remains a key cog in the vital infusion of youth for the Dallas Mavericks. But can we get him a map of the city? Rick Carlisle may have beaten us to it.





In all fairness Dallas is the fifth largest metropolitan area in North America, according to World Atlas, behind only Mexico City, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. So we get it — not exactly the friendliest commute. Noel is anticipating his first start with Dallas tonight at 7:30 p.m., which can be viewed on Fox Sports Southwest.




Podcast host and credentialed media member covering Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Wings | Roamed the rapidly growing area of Arlington Texas for the last 25 years. I graduated Texas Tech in 2014 with my Bachelor's degree in Media and Communications and currently obsess over basketball full-time. In my free time, I'm a substitute teacher and also an Uber driver. I've been following the Mavs since Jason, Jimmy and Jamal were young up-and-comers. If you need their last names, please don't ask me.

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