Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
Game 6 Preview
The Dallas Mavericks return home to face the San Antonio Spurs in this pivotal game 6. After falling 109-103 in game 5, the Mavericks must win this game to extend the series.
Tip off is Friday at 7 pm CT.
Pick-n-Roll: The Spurs have feasted on the Mavericks defense as they’ve run the pick-n-roll over and over and over again. The defense must find a way to not just stop Tony Parker or Manu Ginobili, but also get a body on either Tiago Splitter, Tim Duncan, or Boris Diaw as the roll man.
Swish: Dirk Nowitzki ended game 5 strong, which was more than just a welcoming sight. Coming into game 5, Nowitzki put up 16 points per game. He almost topped that alone in the fourth quarter, putting up 14 of his 26 in the period. Dallas will need its star player to have a vintage performance for all four quarters. The Big German will need to rip the nets with plenty of swishes, preferably off some two-man sets.
Battle of the 6th Men: Manu Ginobili verse Vince Carter. Both have had large impacts on the series. Ginobili is averaging 19 points per game this series and has not slowed down beat. Carter is coming off a 28 points outing. The Mavericks will need to finally find a way to slow the Argentinean lefty down if they want a chance to force a game 7.
Have It All: Since putting up a postseason career high 29 points, Monta Ellis has put up 21 and 20 point efforts in the losses. The point totals aren’t alarming, it’s how he’s gotten them. After begin in full attack mode in game 3, Ellis has seemed stagnant and hesitant on offense. He’ll need to change that for the Mavericks to compete.
He’s Back: The Mavericks will welcome back game 4 standout DeJuan Blair back after serving his one game suspension.
Supporting Cast: Both teams have plenty of talent in this department – Boris Diaw, Jose Calderon, Splitter, Carter, Samuel Dalembert, Kawhi Leonard, Danny Green, and the list goes on and on – the cast that has the greater impact will give their side a much-needed advantage.
Rick Carlisle has done a great job of getting his team this far; he’ll have his biggest challenge to stave off elimination. Good thing for the Mavs, Nowitzki usually comes up big in these games; he holds career averages of 28.9 points and 11.4 rebounds in elimination home games (20 games).
If the Mavericks pull off the game 6 win, game 7 will be Sunday.