Dallas Mavericks: An honest breakdown of the season schedule

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - FEBRUARY 24: J.J. Barea #5 of the Dallas Mavericks shoots the ball against the Utah Jazz on February 24, 2018 at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY, UT - FEBRUARY 24: J.J. Barea #5 of the Dallas Mavericks shoots the ball against the Utah Jazz on February 24, 2018 at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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DENVER, CO – JANUARY 27: Dennis Smith Jr. #1 of the Dallas Mavericks handles the ball during the game against the Denver Nuggets on January 27, 2018 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO – JANUARY 27: Dennis Smith Jr. #1 of the Dallas Mavericks handles the ball during the game against the Denver Nuggets on January 27, 2018 at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images) /

December

Total games: 16

Home games: 8

Away games: 8

Games against Eastern Conference opponents: 2

Games against Western Conference opponents: 14

Game to watch:  The Denver Nuggets should be on everyone’s radar this year as they have put together a team that should really be able to compete. The Mavs will take on Nikola Jokic and company on December 18th. The Nuggets will bring out some great players in Jokic and Paul Millsap, along with some young stars in the making in Jamal Murray and Gary Harris.

Dallas would need a stellar game to keep up with the strong offense of Denver and I think they can do it. The struggle would be the matchup between either Luka or Barnes vs. Paul Millsap, where offense will trump defense on both ends. I think Dallas can pull out the win here, as long as Barton doesn’t kill us.

Easiest game: There first game was a great showing against a much better Utah Jazz team, further proving that every NBA team out there has some great players that can turn it on at any time. When the Mavs play the Sacramento Kings on December 16th, we are hoping that they don’t look quite that good again.

Dallas will look forward to seeing Yogi Ferrell again, but it will be sad to see him in a different uniform. The Mavs should take advantage of their matchups from top to bottom in this game and take it easily. Should, being the key word.

Hardest game: It is a weird phenomenon when a great team gets rid of a normally great player and gets better. That is exactly what happened to the Oklahoma City Thunder this year with Carmelo Anthony. The Mavs play the Thunder on December 31st for the second time in the month of December.

This game will be a back-to-back, home-away, double-header between the Mavs and Thunder and that is not the most fun situation to be in against a favorite for one of the top seeds in the West playoffs. I think Dallas can compete in the other one, but this one will be extra tough.