Dallas Mavericks Fall Short to Indiana in Season Opener
The Dallas Mavericks started the 2016-17 season tonight against the Indiana Pacers, and in classic Mavs fashion, it was a thriller.
In the first quarter Indy came out blazing, running the older Mavs off the court. Dallas looked lethargic out of the gate, with some spectacular play by Deron Williams being the only thing keeping the game competitive. However, as time waned on the Mavs put together some good stretches and ended up only trailing by 7 at the half.
The Pacers and Mavs played each other close in the second half, with Indiana keeping a small lead all the way until late in the fourth. With around 5 minutes left in the fourth quarter the Mavs rallied to a 2 point lead.
As the clock dwindled, Harrison Barnes hit a 3 with 2 seconds left to send it to OT. They went back and forth in OT, but two clutch threes by Paul George and Myles Turner effectively put it away. The Indiana Pacers won 130-121.
Deron Williams had a stellar game with 25 points and 7 assists on 10/18 shooting. JJ Barea and Dirk Nowitzki both turned in 22 points as well. In his Mavericks debut Harrison Barnes had a fairly good outing with 19 points 9 rebounds on 8/14 shooting and some spectacular late game play. The other former Warrior Andrew Bogut had a quieter outing, with 6 points, 6 boards, and 3 assists in only 20 minutes played.
For Indiana, Myles Turner went off for 30 points, 16 rebounds, and 4 blocks on nearly 70% shooting. Paul George supplied 25 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists. Jeff Teague and former Maverick Monta Ellis put up 20 and 19 points accordingly.
Indiana is a very good team, and for a first outing with a new roster, this is a solid game for the Mavs. After a sloppy start, they put together some good offensive sets and consistently made plays. Williams, Dirk, and JJ had to will Dallas through some rough spots but at the end Barnes and Wesley Matthews made some things happen that kept the hope alive.
One thing to keep an eye on is the minutes played tonight. Dirk played 38 minutes and D-Will played 40. I doubt the Maverick’s veterans will be able to keep up that rate, and players like Wes Matthews and Barnes will need to pick up some of the slack in order for the Mavs to need those older guys less.
With Rick Carlisle and co still learning just how to capitalize on all the talent on this roster, Mavs fans should feel good about game 1 and keep high hopes for the Mavericks going forward.
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