10 Things Mavericks need to do to gain respect in West with the help of Jim Varney

AJ Smith
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic
Dallas Mavericks, Luka Doncic / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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6. Dallas Mavericks need to look to the past

I’ve written before about the 2021-2022 Mavs March push. Unfortunately, it hasn’t repeated itself as I had hoped. Or, perhaps, like a stubborn Spring, it’s just a bit delayed. 

Last year, the Mavs came off a loss to Philly to win nine of their last 12 games. Your memory might tell you it was that heralded defense they played with last year, but actually, they surrendered 110.3 points per game during that stretch, far more than their worst 12-game stretch of the season, in which they went 4-8 despite only surrendering 95.6 points per game.

With the help of Professor Melon, Ernest spends the duration of Ernest Rides Again searching for a Revolutionary War relic. The Mavs, too, would be wise to go digging into the past, but they don’t need to go as far as 1776. That stretch coincided with the increased usage of the Jalen Brunson-Luka Doncic backcourt, which significantly increased the speed of play and allowed the Mavs to reach their full offensive potential. 

With Brunson gone, the Mavs should look to Kyrie and, occasionally, Hardy to push the tempo down the stretch. Listen to the relics of the past: this year’s defense won’t improve much, so let the offense dictate the pace.