Despite a late effort, the Mavericks come away empty-handed in the Twin Cities on Saturday night, falling to the Timberwolves 112-99.
The theme of the young season continued as the Mavericks fell behind early and never recovered. A blowout for most of the game, Dennis Smith Jr. made the final score respectable with 13 fourth quarter points.
As the lone bright spot for Dallas, the point guard prodigy displayed a dazzling array of moves, including a thunderous tomahawk dunk after blowing by Jeff Teague. He finished with 18 points and 5 rebounds on the night.
Harrison Barnes also pitched in 17 points on 8-13 shooting. However, he posted a team worse -21 in his 30 minutes on the court. The point guard tandem of Devin Harris and J.J. Barea were the only other Mavericks in double figures with 15 and 14 apiece.
Perhaps hoping to find a spark, Coach Carlisle inserted Salah Mejri into the starting lineup after the center’s big game on Thursday. The move failed to pay off as Mejri was held scoreless in just 9 minutes on the floor.
On the other end, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins carved up the Mavs defense, finishing with 31 and 23 points respectively. The duo of former 1st-overall picks made up for an off-night from Jimmy Butler, who mustered just 4 points on seven shots. As a team, the Wolves shot a blistering 54.4% percent, including 41.7% from distance.
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After surrendering their sixth straight game, the Mavericks continued the worst start in franchise history and are now a league worse 1-10.
The Nerlens-Carlisle standoff continued, although things have yet to reach a boiling point. The soon-to-be unrestricted free agent played just 14 minutes and remains relegated to a bench role.
As the Mavericks’ hopes of turning around the season grow dimmer, Mavs fans may find themselves starting the CBB scouting process early when the regular season begins on November 10th. Doncic, Porter, Bagley or Ayton? Let us know of your thoughts in the comments below.
As perhaps the last X factor to save the season, Seth Curry remains without a concrete timetable to return from a stress reaction in his left tibia.
The Mavericks will have two days off before traveling to D.C. to take on John Wall and the Wizards at 6pm CDT on Tuesday.