The Dallas Mavericks have a chance to move up to the sixth seed or remain in the seventh. They currently sit in the seven seed, only 1/2 a game behind the Denver Nuggets. If they were to move up to the sixth seed, they would face a Los Angeles Lakers team who has swept the season series, 4-0. However, if they were to remain in the seven seed, they would face an Oklahoma City Thunder team they defeated last season in the Western Conference Finals, 4-1. However, they have gone a meager 1-3 this season against the Thunder. They have to feel they have a better chance at knocking off Oklahoma City than the Lakers, though. Two of the losses vs. OKC this season were decided by four and two points. The Mavericks couldn’t defeat a Lakers team sans Kobe Bryant. In order for the Mavs to have a legitimate chance at defending their title, they need to remain in the seven seed in order to face the Thunder.
Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavs frontline matchup much better with the Thunder and they also have terrific guard play along with a bevy of experience in Jason Terry, Vince Carter and Jason Kidd. In a series with the Lakers, the Mavericks most certainly would not hold the experience edge nor the championship pedigree nor the talent. Jason Kidd has been to the Finals three times, finally winning last season and you’d have to think having him in the playoffs will tremendously swing things in the Mavericks favor, especially against an inexperienced Russell Westbrook, who is a turnover machine playing outside of his position at the point. The Thunder are also missing their backup point guard for the remainder of the season, Eric Maynor, who provided such a calming presence to the Thunder last season, especially in the playoffs. If any top seeded team appears most vulnerable headed to the postseason, it has to be the Thunder. The Mavericks have a chance to shock the NBA world and advance if they remain in the seven seed.