The Dallas Mavericks came into Charlotte, North Carolina on the second night of a back to back needing a win. They left empty handed, losing a tough battle.
The Mavs came into this game at 3-14, desperately needing a win. After losing a nail biter in San Antonio the night before, a win would’ve had an immeasurable effect on Dallas’ morale and momentum. We wouldn’t be so lucky.
Early on it was a tight contest as Deron Williams and Justin Anderson had big first halves. Williams looked solid knocking down multiple mid range looks. The Mavs offense is better with him on the floor, and it’ll be good to have him back to full health soon.
In the second half Dallas was desperately matching Charlotte bucket for bucket, trying not to let the game to slip away. Simba came up huge in the third and early fourth quarter hitting some threes and getting to the free throw line. Wesley Matthews and Harrison Barnes were mainly devoid of impact for most of the game, and it was noticeable.
Late in the fourth Dallas only trailed by two, and looked to be gaining momentum. Then Kemba Walker finally got loose and starting lining it up. Add in some head scratching late turnovers, and the ever elusive fourth win became more and more distant. In the final minutes Dallas was in a position to win, yet after playing about 45 minutes of solid defense, they began showing lapses in rotations and couldn’t muster a stop. HB tried to will the Mavs into a victory scoring 8 points in the final 3 minutes, but it wasn’t enough. The Mavs ended up falling short to Charlotte 87-97.
Despite holding Kemba Walker to only 18 points and forcing 10 Hornet turnovers, Dallas couldn’t pull out a victory. The Mavericks had 5 players in double digit scoring led by Harrison Barnes with 17, who again showed some late game heroics. Just not enough, I suppose. Deron Williams had a good outing with 14 points and 8 assists, and looked healthier than he has in a while. Anderson also had a great impact off the bench today providing 15 points going 3/3 from three point land. There were some definite bright spots from the loss, yet 3-15 hurts.
Next up for Dallas the Chicago Bulls come to town on Saturday night. Stay tuned here at The Smoking Cuban for all things Mavericks.