The Dallas Mavericks (36-26) have suffered their first three game losing streak of the season, falling to the Denver Nuggets (26-34) 115-110 in Denver.
The Nuggets are now 3-0 against the Mavericks this season, each game sporting a double-digit lead at some point of the game.
Riding a two game losing streak, this was a game the Mavericks needed to win, especially with the scheduling toughening up in the coming week.
Though the score suggests it was a close game, the Nuggets had a comfortable lead majority of the game. Every time the Mavericks would cut the Nuggets lead to 7-10 points, the Nuggets would answer back to build it back up to 16-17 points.
Too Much Lawson: The Mavericks had no answer for the speedy guard in the first. Ty Lawson came out the gates firing, leading the Nuggets to a 41 point outburst in the period. Lawson finished the game with 20 points and 7 assists, but his first quarter impact, where he started 4-4 and had 11 points got the Nuggets going.
Hickson Takeover: Down six entering the fourth, the Mavericks seemed primed to make one final run and sneak out a win. Well, J.J. Hickson wasn’t having any of that. Hickson was all over the court in the fourth, hitting shots, block shots, and slamming the ball into the basket. He finished the game with 16 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 blocks.
Allas: The Mavericks defense is just abysmal. Once you think they couldn’t get worse, they just find a way to prove us all wrong. The Nuggets shot 46.8 % from field and drew 27 Mavericks’ fouls, which allowed them to shoot 30-36 from the free throw line. It’s safe to say that there is no D in Dallas.
CalderOFF: Jose Calderon probably had his worst game in a Mavs jersey. Getting torched on defense comes to no surprise, but his season high four turnovers and 2-5 shooting made the Spaniard a non-factor for 31 minutes.
This Again!?: Samuel Dalembert didn’t last long against the Nuggets. He played just 10 minutes in the first half before begin replaced in the starting lineup to start the second half by Bernard James. In his 10 minutes, Dalembert tallied just 0 points (0-3), 1 assists, 1 rebound, was a -18 on the court.
Swish: We know Dirk Nowitzki is going to do all he can to get this team back to the playoffs. Nowtizki finished with 27 points (13-20) and 7 rebounds in the losing effort. Monta Ellis (16) and Shawn Marion (15) were the only other starters to score over five points.
Bench Battle: The Mavericks bench had another big night. Vince Carter (17 pts), Brandan Wright (16 pts), Devin Harris (11 assists), and even Jae Crowder (8 pts) had decent nights. The Mavs will need the bench to continue to be a factor, especially if Carlisle holds to his word. The Nuggets had big night from Hickson and Darrell Arthur (10 pts), Aaron Brook (4 pts, 4 ast, 4 steals) and Evan Fournier (9 pts) had a hand in the win.
Carlisle’s Words: Rick Carlisle was not happy with his teams poor effort, saying after the game, “I take full responsibility for this loss because at the beginning of the game we weren’t into it and it was my mistake,” Carlisle continues to say with anger, “I should have subbed all the guys out of the game that were in there that gave up 12 points in three and a half minutes or whatever it was. Not doing that was a major mistake. I’ve been allowing guys to play through things. I believe that these guys would snap out of it, and we didn’t”
The Mavericks will need to snap out of it with the Portland TrailBlazers coming to town Friday.
The Mavericks still remain tied for the 7th seed, thanks to the Memphis Grizzlies falling to the Brooklyn Nets.
The Mavericks are currently tied with the Phoenix Suns for 7th and the Grizzlies sit a game back of both teams.