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5 Shocking stats from the Dallas Mavericks after 6 games

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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The Dallas Mavericks split their first six games of the 2022-23 season, but they could easily be 6-0. They blew massive fourth-quarter leads against the Suns and Thunder and lost a nail-bitter to the shorthanded Pelicans after allowing 40 points in the opening quarter. Luka Doncic became the first player since Michael Jordan in 1986-1987 to score 30-plus in each of his team’s first six games, and the team has played better than their record.

Fans might think at 3-3 that Dallas is in trouble, but they have the fourth-best net rating in the league through six games behind only the Suns, Cavaliers, and Bucks, who all expect to be in the playoffs this season. The Mavs need to sort out their defense and clutch woes, but they have the potential to go on another deep playoff run.

Six games are a small sample, but trends are beginning to develop. Here are five shocking stats from the first two weeks of the 2022-23 season, and what they could mean moving forward.

Shocking stat from Dallas Mavericks after 6 games: 5. Not slowest pace

The Mavs played at the slowest pace in the league last season in their first year under head coach Jason Kidd. Luka Doncic likes to play in the halfcourt and force the opposition to adapt to his cadence. Dallas was a full possession behind the 29th-ranked Knicks last season in pace, and they figured to finish at the bottom again this season, but they are not currently there.

Dallas is playing slightly faster to begin the year. They sat at 95.64 last season, and their pace has jumped to 96.0 in the first six games. Two teams are playing slower than Dallas and both are below the Mavericks' slowest mark from last season. James Harden is never in a hurry, so it should be no shock to see the Sixers at the bottom, but the Raptors ranking below the Mavs is surprising.

Will the Sixers and Raptors speed things up? Do the Mavericks slow things down further as the season progresses? It is something to watch moving forward, but Dallas will be successful no matter what pace they play at this season.