3 discouraging takeaways from Dallas Mavericks loss to the Cavaliers

Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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The Dallas Mavericks had a forgettable night as the Cleveland Cavaliers dominated on their way to a 105-90 win at the American Airlines Center. Donovan Mitchell did not miss on Wednesday night as he led the Cavs to the victory.

Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic () had an off night, and his teammates struggled to make shots in the loss. Still, the 23-year-old managed to break a franchise record. Dallas is now 14-14 on the season, and they lost for just the fifth time at home this season.

The Mavs would like to forget Wednesday’s game, but what can fans take away from the loss? Here are three discouraging things.

Takeaway from Dallas Mavericks loss to Cavaliers: 3. Defense

The Mavs reached the conference finals last season on the back of their defense. They held the Jazz to 100 or fewer points in four of the six games in their first-round playoff series before forcing the Suns into their three-lowest scoring games of the season in round two. They made a significant defensive improvement under head coach Jason Kidd, but they are still trying to find their consistency this season.

Dallas struggled on the defensive end of the floor on Wednesday night. Donovan Mitchell finished with 34 points in a superstar performance as the Cavaliers shot 52.6 percent from the field. The Mavs struggled to get stops on Dec. 14, and they did not make enough shots to make up for their issues.

Coach Kidd has preached defense since taking over the job, and fans know he wants them to play better. Can the Dallas Mavericks do it? It has been an up-and-down start, and finding their defense is the key to getting back on track to making another deep playoff run.