The Dallas Mavericks travel to Oklahoma City to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder, one night after depleting loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Let’s be honest, most Dallas Maverick fans knew that coming into a new season with an aging legend would be tough giving the level of competition and the increase in talent with other teams. Nevertheless, most fans felt that the Mavericks could at least show some type of resolve as the team began to rebuild.
We didn’t think it would be like this, though.
As the season continues, the Mavericks continue to search for some kind of identity and continuity. The emergence of Dennis Smith Jr. continues to fascinate the fans. A look into a bright future is before us to see, but the big picture doesn’t seem to fit the picture frame.
The Mavericks take on the OKC Thunder tonight, coming off a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers Saturday night. LeBron and company were too much for the young team to handle. This resulted in their 11th loss of the season. Now, they take on a 3-headed monster in OKC with Paul George, Carmelo Anthony and last year’s MVP, Russell Westbrook.
The Thunder have had their share of issues with continuity this season. Sitting at 5-7, they are currently in last place in the Northwest division. The Thunder are coming off a win against the Los Angeles Clippers that ended a 4-game losing streak. They may see this game as the beginning of a turnaround for the start of the season. Paul George leads the team averaging 21.3 points. Past-MVP Russell Westbrook continues to show his prowess leading the team in assists and rebounds.
Smith Jr. and crew will have to come out fighting and swinging hard to tame the Thunder. The match ups of Anthony and George automatically create a displeasure on the dry erase board. Smith Jr. must penetrate and create. Wes Matthews must be consistent with his shooting and Mejri will have to stand his ground in the paint to prevent easy buckets. Hopefully, Carlisle can utilize Nerlens Noel in the fold to open the floor for separation.
Do questions start to rise about a 2-11 team looking to turn the page?
Before we start pointing fingers, let’s at least settle down and treat each game differently. Let’s realize that the Mavericks are in uncharted territory they haven’t experienced in a while. But, let’s stay hopeful that things will eventually get better for the team as the season goes on.
The Mavericks play the Thunder tonight at 6:00 pm at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in downtown Oklahoma City.