Dallas traveled to Denver on an emotional high having just recently taken down their in-state rival, San Antonio Spurs on Saturday night. However, the Mavs were also riding a 7-game road losing streak entering the contest. Wilson Chandler recently signed a deal to return to the Nuggets, however, they had a gaping hole in the middle with the recent trade of Nene to Washington. The result? A Maverick pounding, 112-95. Peace out recent road slide. Dirk continues his hot shooting with 33 points, adding 11 rebounds and 6 assists and he has shown no signs of cooling off in this recent scoring surge, averaging 28.5 in his last four games. The Mavericks also get an all-around terrific team effort, including on the defensive end. With six players in double figures, the game reached garbage time with about 5 minutes remaining in the fourth with the Mavs leading by 22.
It helps to have a healthy Roddy Beaubois, an explosive Brandon Wright off the bench as well as a savvy veteran like Vince Carter to bring somewhat of a calming presence when he doen’t try to play out of his element. Lamar Odom still appears to be walking through the motions, and to see him waste away his multitalented self is far from encouraging. In the absence of Shawn Marion, who anchors their defense since the departure of Tyson Chandler in the offseason, the Mavs are proving once again that they are the defending champs and they fully intend on defending the title.
Totaling 33 assists, a season high for the team as well as firing on all cylinders, shooting 54% from the field, they had the home Nuggets gasping for air. In his last two games, Jason Kidd has recorded 20 assists and only ONE turnover. The ageless wonder continues to defy the odds and is once again becoming the prototypical point guard; efficient. He’ll need to continue his impressive play, along with the rest of the team as things do not get easier: Wednesday night the Mavs play host to the L.A. Lakers before heading on the road to take on San Antonio and Houston on consecutive nights.
It’s encouraging to watch the latest Mavericks run and Rick Carlisle needs to be credited with keeping his team in line with all the injuries, the ineffective Odom who has completely disappointed thus far and the loss of Tyson Chandler.