The Chicago Bulls came out in their green jerseys to try their hand at getting some extra luck against the Mavericks. It didn’t turn out very well.
There was a Jason Terry sighting on the court at the AA Center, meaning that the Mavericks are officially at full strength for the stretch run. Granted Terry will need a little time to get accustomed to his new grill, the clear hard plastic mask that Terry wears now to protect his face. Erick Dampier appeared to be running the court cleanly and smoothly, yet I would say he is at 95%.
The point being, outside of a few players getting their legs underneath them, the Mavericks are at full power. With Terry and Dampier back, the Maverick bench is as powerful as it has been for a few years. J.J. Barea is quickly becoming a viable option to spell Jason Kidd, and keeping Kidd’s minutes down will be a must. With Terry, Barea, Dampier, Najera, Rod Boubois, and the defensive stopper himself DeShawn Stevenson all ready, willing, and able to provide a spark off the bench and give the veteran starters a rest, the engine is firing on all cylinders.
The hiccup that was Saturday night when the Mavericks unexpectedly lost to the New York Knicks to end the winning streak behind them, the Mavericks played a complete game against a team desperately trying to hang on in the East playoff chase.
Rick Carlisle decided to sit Jason Kidd the whole 4th period even though the Mavericks did their best to squander a big lead. The Bulls drew within 7 points, but never got closer. J.J. Barea played solidly down the stretch, at one point scoring 10 straight points, and finished with 15 points.
Caron Butler paced the Mavericks with 27 points, getting to the free throw line 16 times. Dirk threw in 26 points, as the Mavericks won game 1 of their new winning streak. How long will this new winning streak last? Well, that’s anyone’s guess.
The Bulls weren’t able to grab the luck of the Irish on St. Patricks Day; the Boston Celtics will try their luck against the Mavericks at the AA Center next.