What to Watch For:
Just eight days ago the Dallas Mavericks almost stole a game1 from the San Antonio Spurs without Devin Harris, Deron Williams, JJ Barea, and Dirk Nowitzki. The Spurs were also without LaMarcus Aldridge, Tim Duncan2, Tony Parker, Dewayne Dedmon, and former Maverick David Lee.3 In their second matchup of the season, the Spurs are coming off a surprising loss at home to the Orlando Magic yesterday on one of the weirdest nights in NBA History.
The Cavs (vs Bucks), Spurs (vs Magic) and Clippers (vs Nets) all lost Tuesday.
According to BPI, there was a 1% chance of that happening. pic.twitter.com/MaIsEr1MeD
— ESPN (@espn) November 30, 2016
Last season the Spurs finished the season 40-1(!) at home, outscoring their opponents by 13.2 points.4 This year, they have already lost four games at home (4-4) and are undefeated (10-0) on the road. It’s hard to imagine that the Spurs first loss on the road will come tonight against the 3-13 Mavericks, but on the second night of a back-to-back Pop has been known to leave his best players on the bench for “Rest” purposes. However, in four “second night of a back-to-back” situations this season, Coach Popovic has only held out one player, 39-year-old Manu Ginobili, for “Rest” in one game.5
One thing the Mavericks and Spurs have in common (Besides being the two most successful franchises over the past twenty years) is their pace of play, the Spurs are ranked 27th in pace while the Mavericks are 29th.6
In their last meeting, Seth Curry scored a team-high 23 points shooting 5-10 from three-point range7 against the Spurs.
Kawhi isn’t just a reigning two-time Defensive Player of the Year, he’s a one-man wrecking crew that now haunts the dreams of Sacramento’s Ben McLemore.8
Kawhi Leonard vs Dorian Finney-Smith and/or Harrison Barnes
In their last meeting, Kawhi scored 24 points9 shooting 8-19 from the floor. Most of those shots came against either DFS or HB, here’s a breakdown of how each player defended Kawhi on those shots:
LaMarcus Aldridge vs Harrison Barnes
Dirk is not going to play, meaning Barnes will most likely start at the 4 (power forward) position and be matched-up against Aldridge who didn’t play in their last meeting. Barnes stands about three inches shorter and 50 pounds lighter than LMA, so expect Aldridge to get a few more post up attempts than his 4.7 average. However, this season, LMA has only shot 58.3% on post up attempts which would rank in the bottom half of players getting at least four post up touches per game.
Rick Carlisle vs Greg Popovich
These two are arguably the two best coaches in the NBA11, even though the talent level of their teams is nowhere near comparable it’s always great to see two expert tacticians face off against each other.
Deron Williams – Probable
Devin Harris – Questionable
Dirk Nowitzki – Out
JJ Barea – Out
San Antonio Spurs
Dewayne Dedmon – Expected to play12
— Dallas Mavericks (@dallasmavs) November 30, 2016
- Dallas led for 25:33 min, while Spurs led for 16:42 min
- Yeah, I know he’s retired, but it’s still weird so I’m going to leave him here
- Don’t laugh, he has been pretty good for them so far
- Nov 26 @ Washington
- Memphis is 28th, Utah is 30th
- All of which came in the first half
- This first steal is ridiculous, he just takes it out of his hands.
- His average on the year
- Curry 2, Powell 2, Wes 2, No One 1
- And apparently there’s an argument to be made that Carlisle is better than Pop
- He played last night against the Magic for the first time in 6 games
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