3 studs, 2 duds from Mavericks' disappointing preseason loss to Timberwolves

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1. Stud - Richaun Holmes

Richaun Holmes only played less than 10 minutes in his first action with Dallas since coming in a trade from Sacramento, but the veteran big-man did very well in his limited action in the second half.

Holmes was primarily defending Luka Garza and Naz Reid in the game, and though he's labeled as maybe just a slightly above-average defender, he had a string of possessions in the third quarter where he got block and strip that lead to the Mavericks getting the ball back.

Holmes looked stout in the Mavericks' defensive coverages and didn't give up any easy looks. He also did a good job at the other end holding down the dunker spot and making himself available once the Mavericks got dribble penetration.

Holmes looks big (muscle-wise) on the court, and it's extremely encouraging for Dallas to see how good of shape he's in after the 29-year-old big man dealt with a flurry of unfortunate happenings that derailed his career in Sacramento the last couple of seasons.

The Mavericks' plan at starting center hasn't been unraveled just yet, as they plan to explore who will fit best between Holmes, Powell, and Lively II. One thing is for certain though, and that is that Richaun Holmes definitely looks like he at least deserves a solid spot in the rotation if we are judging off the first preseason game.

Holmes will need to continue to prove himself throughout the rest of preseason and training camp if he's going to be a long-term option for Dallas at center or even just this season, but if he continues to be serviceable on both ends and returns to his form from a few seasons ago it could very well lessen the need for the Mavericks to go out and find a stop-gap rim protector until Lively II is ready.

We'll have you covered with the rest of Mavericks preseason basketball as they play the Timberwolves once again in Abu Dhabi on Saturday before heading to Madrid, Spain.