5 Reasons the Mavericks will crush the Clippers in first round of playoffs

Dallas Mavericks v Miami Heat
Dallas Mavericks v Miami Heat / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
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1. Clippers have more holes in their rotation than Mavericks

While almost no NBA team has zero weaknesses, the Mavericks have done a great job of addressing nearly all of their weakness throughout the course of the regular season. After bringing in Washington and Gafford at the trade deadline, the Mavericks have the personnel to matchup defensively against nearly any team in the league, something that seemed impossible for the Mavericks given their average defense to start the season.

Dallas still has some subtle holes in their roster such as their 3-point shooting inconsistency at times from their wings and bench, but overall Dallas’ defense has given them a new gritty identity as a team. However, the playoffs are all about attacking even the most marginal disadvantages that another team may have, so the Mavericks will be tested to the fullest by the Clippers.

Even so though, the Clippers have a few more holes in their lineup at face value than the Mavericks do. For instance, with the way Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving have played defense to close the season, it can be argued the Mavericks don’t have any “minus” defenders in their starting lineup. The Clippers on the other hand may have two lackluster defenders in their starting lineup as far as this matchup is concerned, as James Harden has historically been a negative defender and Ivica Zubac has gotten played off the floor every time the Mavericks have played the Clippers in the playoffs.

The Clippers also may have trouble creating offense at times, especially if Kawhi Leonard misses multiple games, as Harden was extremely inefficient as a scorer to close the regular season. Norman Powell or Russell Westbrook could give Dallas some trouble off the bench in a game or two in that regard, but the Mavericks will likely have good enough point-of-attack defense to make that a non-issue.

It will be interesting to see all the game-to-game adjustments that the Clippers and Mavericks make in this series to try and yield an advantage, but the Mavericks clearly have a better roster on paper, especially with Leonard’s health up in the air.

For more on the Dallas Mavericks ahead of the playoffs, stay tuned as we will have you covered.