Mavs Are the S-Word. Rinse and Repeat.

Mavs-Soft.jpg
While I was out last week the Dallas Mavericks blew a seven-point lead in the final minute in a flabbergasting loss in New Orleans. Afterward, head coach Rick Carlisle called his team "soft."

Veteran shooting guard Jason Terry bristled at the suggestion, saying "I'm not soft, not me. I don't know where that comes from, but we ain't soft."

Upon further review - 96-91 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers Saturday night, I'm looking at you - yes Terry, you and your team are indeed soft.

In front of the largest regular-season crowd in American Airlines Center Mavs' history, Dallas lost to the Lakers despite committing only five turnovers, outrebounding L.A. by five, blocking nine shots and having the luxury of Kobe Bryant miss a big chunk of the second half with a sprained ankle.

I'll say it again, Caron Butler has something the Mavs desperately need. An edge. A willingness to dive on the floor. To get a flagrant foul. To refuse to settle for the open jumper and drive the ball to the basket.

At this point - despite two seperate 17-1 stretches this season - the Mavs won't catch the Spurs for the best record in the West and, in fact, they'll finish No. 3 behind the charging Lakers. Why?

Yep, soft.

I've got some examples and, Terry, you're not gonna like 'em.

The Mavs trailed the Lakers, 84-79, with five minutes remaining. Their next six shots were all jumpers from at least 15 feet. Still, the Mavs had a shot, down three with 12 seconds remaining.

Off a perfect inbounds play, Terry got the ball wide open just outside the lane on the low block. But instead of going up for a dunk, possibly drawing a foul and creating a game-tying three-point play, he tried a finesse flip that caromed off the rim and out.

Soft.

When the Mavs are good, they're great. If the outside shots are falling, they can beat anybody anywhere anytime. But if not, I still don't see a relilable Plan B.

A couple of missed shots and all the sudden J.J. Barea over-dribbles and Dirk Nowitzki forces shots and Terry, well he just keeps catching-and-shooting. Against the Lakers he was six of 16, missing four of five 3-pointers.

Reminded me of last spring's playoff loss to the Spurs when Terry was as passive as he was horrible. Reminded me, yet again, that these Mavs aren't different enough to believe they won't wind up the same as those Mavs.


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jamal
jamal

You've been hanging out with Gavin too much Richie. It was a couple of bad games- big deal. You win 20 out of 23 games and there's bound to be some serious mental fatigue.

Mishon
Mishon

The Mavs are different from last years Mavs, b/c they will get out of the first round this year. However, the buck probably stops there. Not having Caron Butler is such a huge blow. He seems to change the whole dynamic of the team when he is out there. Although it's a long shot, I hope he is right in his optimism that he thinks he will be back for the playoffs...but I won't hold my breath.

Although I despise the Heat, did anyone else get really excited when they saw that they beat the Spurs by 30 last night? I did. I saw the score right before I went to bed and I think I slept better b/c of it.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

The Spurs beat them by 30 in SA a week ago, and pulled their starters with about 9 mins left in the 4th. Miami kept theirs in until 2:45 left to keep the foot on the gas. There's nothing more classic than a LeBron vs. Steve Novak matchup at the end of a game, no? The Spurs pulled their starters at 5 minutes, and I was praying for a season ending injury for one of the Fab 3.

Mishon
Mishon

I know the Spurs beat them a week ago. I didn't see the highlights or read about the game, all I saw was the final score. I am sure when the Spurs starters were pulled though, they were probably out of the game. I would like season ending injuries to occur for both teams to be honest.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

the Spurs got their asses handed to them, Miami just wanted to put that exclamation point on things. Winning by 30 is much better than by 20, especially when you don't have to face that team again. Looking forward to Mavs/Spurs on Friday. It's always fun to hear from the losing team how the game didn't really mean much for whatever reason, it's just one game. So I predict if the Spurs lose, we'll hear "it's just one game etc. etc.", Mavs lose "it's just one game, we're not chasing them we're chasing the Lakers". I always wish failure upon Jason Terry.

Mavs homer
Mavs homer

Good article Whitt. Jason Terry is and has been the real problem for the Mavs as he does not show up in playoff type games. His game shrinks and he becomes a liability. Even though they lost I was encouraged as they played tougher than they have in the past. They were close even though they had a poor shooting night. Corey Brewer and Roddy need to play bigger roles. Why did Ian Mahimi not play. Carlisle is part of the problem too...

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

The Mavs are who they are. The Lakers are damn scary. They have a legitimate inside game and now they're flexing their muscle. These playoffs are going to be no joke. The firt and second rounds are going to be brutal, which is awesome. The Spurs just have too big of a cushion for anyone to catch them, but have their own problems. Heavily dependent on the 3 and the best inside game for them has been Tony Parker. Pop has monkeyed with the rotation more in the past 5 games then he has all season. Crazy to think the Mavs were three one point losses away from having HUGE winning streaks. That's the way basketball go though.

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