So after four games in this early NBA Season, there are a couple of Maverick observations to make:
- The Mavs have gotten considerably younger at every position. (Maybe not PF but with Dirk, do you really need to? See: Spurs)
- The perimeter defense is going to be even better than the 2011 Championship team.
- Darren Collison may be a better acquisition than O.J. Mayo.
Now true, Kaman and Brand aren’t that young, but I’m talking backcourt players here.
When you let 2 of the oldest (and arguably most important) players on last years team leave for FA, you’re going to have a re-tooled and younger team going into this season. Jason Terry’s scoring will be missed; however Vince Carter stated that he “wants to be the new Jet”. So far its working out for him: he is Avg 13.7 PPG, good enough to be the 4th leading scorer on the team.
Which brings up my next observation: perimeter defense. We all know that Shawn Marion is considered to be the best defender in a Mavs uni in the last 3 or 4 years since he’s been here. Which definitely helps out your overall defense including the perimeter defense. The thing is, with this year’s Mavs team, having athletic guards that are quick and can recover fast on the perimeter is special. With the frontcourt additions in Kaman and Brand, that allows the Mavs to be very aggressive on the outside with the defense. Mayo can play D that most would consider to be average, but Collison is a different story. Just ask Steve “MVP” Nash about Darren’s defense! Collison allows you to play full court or half court D when needed. He has very active hands and his speed to stay in front of the ball is ri-di-cu-lous. I would expect to see more turnovers which will lead to more fast break points this year.
So now we have Collison vs Mayo. Don’t get me wrong, both of these players are going to be very good for the Mavs; I just think that Collison may end up being the Mav who is here the longest. The Mavs haven’t had a PG with that type of blinding speed since a young Devin Harris. If you can remember back that far, he was the X factor in the Mavs first Finals run because of the speed he possesses on the Offensive and Defensive side of the ball. Once Dirk comes back, (Hurry Dirk!!) this team can be just as good as the 2006 WC championship team. Mayo is going to be a scorer that can put up 25 with ease, so the absence of Jet’s scoring should be replaced nicely between him and Vinsanity. If the Mavs can all get on the same page defensively this team will be fighting for the a top 5 playoff seed in the WC because they have speed, scoring and defense.
So sit back and watch your Dallas Mavericks prove everyone wrong again and make a long playoff run that will end a little different than last year’s. 4 games in and I feel very confident in making that statement. Overreaction? That’s what we do down here in the Big D.
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