Lakers/Mavericks (1st half)

ESPN, Jaz-Z, Beyonce, Los Angeles, must be a big night of basketball in Dallas. A big night gets a halftime blog post.

With Caron Butler sitting out with what I’m told is a “terrible reaction” to some medication, the Mavericks are playing shorthanded.

I’ve hinted at it, and tonight I am convinced of it. A big key for the Dallas Mavericks will be the backup point guard position. Both Rod Beaubois and J.J. Barea got minutes in the first half, giving Jason Kidd some rest.

On a night when Kobe Bryant doesn’t score until 3:30 left in the half, the Mavericks were unable to take advantage.

A one minute stretch that sticks out in my mind in the first half is with 5 minutes left in the half. Rod Beaubois was forced out of the game with a bloody nose, Carlisle decided against bringing in Jason Kidd into the game. He went with J.J. Barea.

Barea hit an open jumper with 5 minutes to go in the half to bring the Mavericks within 3 of the Lakers. At this point, Phil Jackson summons the scoreless Bryant back into the game, Carlisle countered with bringing Kidd into the game.

Barea stayed in the game.

Down three, the Mavericks had the ball. Barea was able to drive into the lane, pumped faked getting the defender in the air, leaving an open 2 footer for Barea. He missed the bunny.

Still down three, Haywood blocks Odom’s shot leading to a 2 on 1 with Barea leading the break. Pushing it up the court, Barea got to the basket and missed the lay-up.

Two key misses in a key stretch.

After the Barea miss, Bryant got on the boards with an off-balance jumper fading out of bounds.

Carlisle replaces Barea with Shawn Marion.

So with Kobe Bryant struggling to find his stroke, the Lakers still lead the Mavericks by one at half.

I’ll be watching to see if Carlisle uses Beaubois or Barea in the second half. My guess we will see Kidd all second half.

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Tags: Dallas J.J. Barea Jason Kidd Jay-Z Kobe Bryant Lakers Los Angeles Mavericks NBA Rob Beaubois

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