Amar’e Stoudemire Blasts Team’s Focus After 33-Point Loss


Amar’e Stoudemire left the New York Knicks thinking he’d be joining a winner, a team capable of contending for an NBA championship. So far that hasn’t been the case.

The Mavericks have lost five of their nine games since Stoudemire made his debut in Dallas, most recently suffering their worst loss of the season, a 33-point beatdown at the hands of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, and the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Clearly this is not what STAT signed up for and his post-game remarks, courtesy of ESPN’s Tim MacMahon reflect it:

"I came here to win, and we’re [4 ½] games out of being out of the playoffs, which is unacceptable. This is something we can’t accept. We’ve got to find a way to refocus. We’ve got to key into the details of the game of basketball. We can’t cheat the game. We can’t screw around in games and practices and joke around all the time and figure we’re going to win games. This is the pros. It’s the highest level of basketball. We’ve got to act that way. We’ve got to pay more attention to detail. We can’t be making minor mistakes. We made mistakes that second-year players or rookie players make in this league. We’re a veteran team. Guys are 13, 14, 16 years in this league. We should know better than that."

The Mavericks signed Stoudemire, now in his 13th NBA season, to add some size and scoring punch off the bench. He’s providing that, averaging 11.4 points on 62% shooting in just 17 minutes a night, but his rant displayed what else he brings to the table. Veteran leadership.

It’s about time somebody said something, and frankly it should have come from Dirk Nowitzki or Tyson Chandler two weeks ago. Surely things have been said behind closed doors, but the private pow-wows aren’t working and sometimes it takes a public lambasting to get the point across. The lack of focus, effort, and energy, especially over the last month and a half where the Mavericks have gone 9-8, is disturbing.

In the five losses since Stoudemire’s arrival the average margin of defeat has been 18.8 points. Margin of victory against the woeful Hornets, slumping Raptors, youthful Pelicans and inept Lakers? 8.5.

Sure, injuries have hurt. But it’s no excuse.

Time is running out for the Mavericks to get it together, and though it may sound gloomy, there hasn’t been any evidence recently that they will. If the Mavericks are a first-round exit, and it looks like they will be if they make the playoffs at all, expect some major changes in Big D.

Next: Loss to Cavs by the Numbers

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