The Dallas Mavericks have had bad luck with a worse schedule over the last few weeks and it made its presence in the team record. Can they benefit against the Pelicans tonight?
The Dallas Mavericks continue to struggle across the board when it comes to playing basketball. That may seem a little harsh, but after this week, the Mavs have earned a little bit of tough love from their fans.
After embarrassing losses to the two teams with the best records in the NBA, the Mavericks need to quit licking their wounds and go out and win a game. Tonight is going to give Dallas the best opportunity they have had in over a week.
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The New Orleans Pelicans have had a similar start to the season as the Mavericks. With multiple starters being plagued by injury and a tough losing streak to begin the season, the Pels have had to rely on a young star to bring them through.
Anthony Davis is obviously a much more proven young star than Harrison Barnes, but the fact remains that the teams have seen similar frustrations. New Orleans has definitely seen better results from their situation as they sit at a 6-11 record as opposed to the 2-13 Mavs.
Nov 23, 2016; Dallas, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki (41) shoots over LA Clippers forward Wesley Johnson (33) during the second quarter at the American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
While the Mavericks are still in one of the biggest droughts in recent franchise history (8 consecutive losses), the Pelicans just lost a 4 game win streak on Friday to the Portland Trail Blazers. Anthony Davis led the team in scoring in 3 of the 4 wins.
Dallas does not usually do well against MVP candidates in the league, but it makes it even more difficult to slow someone down when they play the same position as Dirk Nowitzki. Davis is currently averaging 31 points, 11 rebounds, and nearly 3 blocks per game this season.
The key for the Mavericks to have success tonight will be through Dirk. Although Davis will be a handful and will probably see 4 or 5 different Mavericks try to guard him, the same will happen with Dirk if he catches his stride. No one on that roster (or any roster for that matter) will be able to slow down Dirk.
Harrison Barnes will be crucial on the defensive end as it is likely that we see him begin the game matched up on Anthony Davis. If that doesn’t work, expect to see Dorian Finney-Smith check in early and often.