The Mavs Losses to Golden State in Context

You're going to hear and read A LOT about the Mavs being 0-3 against the Warriors this season. It's important to look beyond the face value of that record.

Dirk41 touched on this yesterday, but it's worth expanding.

Game One: Dallas loses at home by three. This was all the way back on November 6th. You know what means, it was during th Mavs weird four game losing streak to start the season -- when the Heat were still heavy on the brain and they were still trying to figure things out after barely playing together in the preseason. It's almost worth ignoring for that reason alone; those first four game were an anomaly. There are still other things from this game worth pointing out. Josh Howard only played 15 minutes because he sprained his ankle in the 2nd quarter. Devean George did not dress. Anthony Johnson played 19 minutes. Golden State had not yet made the big trade with Indiana.

Game Two: Dallas gets blown out in Golden State (where the Warriors were 30-11). The Mavs lost by 17 and were actually down 29 after 36 minutes. This was the second game of a back-to-back -- Dallas beat the Lakers the night before. Devean George injured his knee in that game and could only play two minutes against the Warriors. This was the first time Dallas played the Warriors after they traded Dunleavy and Murphy for Harrington and Jackson. Don Nelson rested Baron Davis the night before so that he would be ready for this game - it was a big deal to him/them. There is no way to quantify this, but Dallas probably came into this game overconfident -- they had won 17 in a row and just beaten the Lakers by 36. Others might say that just shows the Warriors beat Dallas at their best. My counter to that, the Mavs at their best don't turn the ball over 23 times. Dirk and Josh at their best don't shoot a combined 8 for 26.

Game Three: "Dallas" gets blown out in Golden State. You know this one already. Dirk, Howard, Stack, and Dampier were all wearing suits on the bench. The starting lineup was Barea-Ager-Buckner-George-Diop. To quote Clips Nation, it was the "Z-Team". Nothing from this game can be used to project the future. Meaningless.

In my opinion, the first and third game should be ignored. That does leave the ugliest loss, but what can be taken away from one game? Plenty of things happened in that game that I don't have any reason to believe will happen in the playoffs. For starters, the Mavs came out flat and played with no energy at all. Intensity won't be an issue in the postseason. The Mavs 23 turnovers was the most they had in a game all season. It was also Dirk's worst game of the season (3 of 11 from the field and 7 turnovers) - uncharacteristic isn't a strong enough word.

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