The Dallas Mavericks Will Have Their Hands Full Tonight
By Kohl Rast
The Dallas Mavericks are still looking for their 3rd win and tonight is going to be a real test. Can Dallas take down the Greek Freak, Jason Kidd, and the rest of the Milwaukee Bucks?
In what has turned into a very difficult NBA season for the Dallas Mavericks so far, the hope for a win is no longer a nightly expectation, but a heavily sought after outcome. Dallas has found a variety of ways to lose games so far this year, and many of them have come down to the wire before falling short.
The truth is that Dallas has played fairly well against many of the better teams in the league. Close losses to San Antonio, Cleveland, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Memphis, (and a win against Washington), have all been within reach in the final minutes but the Mavericks have been unable to capitalize. All 6 of these teams are currently in playoff position.
Tonight brings about yet another playoff team in the Milwaukee Bucks, who are led by MVP frontrunner, Giannis Antetokounmpo. Giannis has been unbelievable through the first 14 games of the season, averaging an incredible 30 points, 10 rebounds, and 4.6 assists per game to go along with his 58% from the field.
He is joined in the starting lineup by a very talented group of Eric Bledsoe, Khris Middleton, Tony Snell, and John Henson. They also have a strong bench between Thon Maker, Malcolm Brogdon, and Matthew Dellavedova (if healthy). Dallas, on the other hand, has put together a handful of different starting lineups and it will remain to be seen who they go with tonight. They are supported by a bench with a variety of talent.
The key to this game for Dallas will, of course, be to shut down the Greek Freak as much as possible. This duty will likely go to Harrison Barnes mostly who will have his hands full on both ends of the court. For the Mavs, they will need great play from their guards, as Bledsoe will be the weak link in a very long defense put together by the Bucks.
One fun thing about this game will be the number of members present from the Dallas Mavericks championship team of 2011. Aside from Coach Carlisle, Dirk Nowitzki, and JJ Barea, the Milwaukee Bucks also feature Jason Kidd as their head coach and Jason Terry as their old veteran. All of these players had huge impacts on that amazing playoff run and will undoubtedly receive a warm reception from the Mavericks crowd.
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Dallas and Milwaukee tip-off a little bit later tonight at 8:00 central time, as the Dallas Stars play at the AAC in an afternoon game today and the crew will need to switch the ice back to a court. Let’s go Mavs!