Dallas Mavericks: Three things to watch for vs. Jazz

Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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Monsters in the paint

DeAndre Jordan is off to a strong start in his first five games with the Mavericks. Jordan’s pedestrian block statistics from last season are looking more and more like discontent with the Clippers organization each game. It’s early, but two blocks per game is a great sign the Houston native is back on the right track as an athletic big in his 30s.

Utah has their behemoth down low in the reigning defensive player of the year, Rudy Gobert. While Jordan is creeping out of his prime, Gobert is screaming into the Twitter-sphere as a young star for years to come. Both players are similar in many cases, yet different in their respected team’s scenario.

Jordan is playing for the coveted last multi-year big-money deal. Meanwhile, in Salt Lake City, Gobert is sitting comfortably with three years left on his deal, with only playoff success on the horizon.

These two players are alike in many categories. The head-on collision is inevitable, except with Jordan and Gobert, the results won’t be hideous.

DeAndre Jordan is shooting a faith-changing 84 percent from the line. Honestly, it took me checking three different sources before I believed it. If Jordan can keep up with these career-high numbers, it will put Dallas over in the numerous close games they lost last season.

The point guard position will play a significant factor in which center gets the upper hand. Rudy Gobert has one of the most unselfish, laser-eye possessing, point guards in the league in the pride of Spain, Ricky Rubio. Rubio hardly ever looks for his own offense, but he excels in creating for others.

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Pick-and-roll opportunities are right up Carlisle’s wheelhouse. However, Dennis Smith Jr, at the moment, isn’t the ideal player to wield such a weapon. If Dallas wants to truly get DeAndre going, J.J. Barea or Luka Doncic are the leading candidates for the job.

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Regardless of the games’ outcomes, Jordan and Gobert’s physical efforts and the potential for multiple alley-oops make this game worth the admission. The Mavericks and Jazz tip-off tonight at 6:00 central time here in Dallas. Follow us at @TheSmokingCuban for all of your Dallas Mavericks news.