Mavs Extend Winning Streak, Keep Wizards Winless on the Road

Dirk Nowitzki led all scorers with 24 points as the Dallas Mavericks won their fifth straight game by defeating the Washington Wizards, 102-92.  The Mavericks were able to win all four games of their home-stand.  Nowitzki's 24 points matches the total of consecutive road losses for the Wizards to start season (0-24).  The Wizards led by as many as 12 points in the second quarter before the Mavericks responded with a 10-4 run with just under two minutes to go in the half for a 50-49 lead.

Dallas has now won four of the last five meetings with Washington, including 10 of the last 15.  The Mavericks are 7-2 in their last nine match-ups with the Wizards at home, but the Wizards had split the last four games with the Mavericks at the American Airlines Center. 

Shaw Marion scored 14 points and grabbed 9 rebounds in the victory.  Marion averaged 14.0 points and 9.5 rebounds in the 2009-10 season series against the Wizards.  Despite the road struggles for Washington, the two teams met in Dallas during the 2010 preseason and the Wizards recorded a 97-94 win on October 5th.  Jason Kidd recorded his eighth double-double of the season with 11 points and a game-high 11 assists (Dallas is 6-2 when Kidd records a double-double).  Kidd was just one rebound short of recording a triple-double.  His three-point basket with 49.8 second left in the game gave the Mavericks and eight point lead and secured the victory.

Did THAT Just Happen?!

- With Sasha Pavlovic being released, the Mavericks needed a new starting small forward.  Brian Cardinal got the start and that created the 12th different lineup the Mavericks have used over the course of the season.  Cardinal filled his role as "The Janitor" by doing a lot of the dirty work as well as hitting shots from long range.

- Jason Terry must have thought that the third quarter was the fourth quarter as he did his damage coming right out of halftime.  Terry went 4-6 from the field and scored eight points in the third quarter.  He finished the game with 14 points and also had his second straight impressive performance as a passer by dishing out eight assists.

- The Wizards built a 12-point lead in the first half.  For a team with their road record, that is a pretty tough pill to swallow.  Going into a timeout in the second quarter, Coach Rick Carlisle was seen yelling at his team and threw his clipboard on the ground.  Some people have said that a coach has six bullets that he can use over the course of the season and Monday night was the first one used.  It worked as the team responded and raised their energy level to take back control of the game.

- Tyson Chandler continued his late push to be named as an All-Star as he recorded a double-double by halftime (13 points and 10 rebounds).  Eight of his rebounds came on the offensive end of the floor and that is a new season-high (previous high was seven).  John Wall drove into the lane in the second half and barreled into Chandler and Brian Cardinal which led to Chandler tweaking his left ankle.  After the game, he was seen putting a brace on his ankle.  He mentioned that he felt fine and that it shouldn't be a lingering problem.  The All-Star hopeful finished the game with a monster 18 points and 18 rebounds.

- Robo-Nowizki solidified his return with another strong and efficient shooting performance.  Nowitzki scored 24 points on just 11 shots from the field (8-8 from the free throw line).  He also had an unconventional four-point play.  With 6:51 to go in the final quarter, Nowitzki made a lay-up and was fouled.  Wizards Coach Flip Saunders was not happy with the officiating and was called for a technical foul.  Nowitzki hit his free throw for the foul and then the shot for the technical foul.  The encounter gave the Mavericks a ten point lead, 91-81.  Over the last two games, Nowitzki scored 43 points on 15-22 shooting from the field.

 

Box Score Revelations

- The Mavericks won the rebounding battle for the second straight game (50-45).  Tyson Chandler led the charge with his 18 rebounds.  Shawn Marion and Jason Kidd each added nine rebounds in the victory.  The only two players who did not grab a rebound were DeShawn Stevenson and Brendan Haywood.

- The Wizards were trailing 50-49 going into the second half and at that point, they completed their implosion.  They were held to 7-23 shooting from the field (30.4%) and had some silly turnovers.  When you're a team that is struggling on the road, you have to find ways to avoid quarters like that or you will remain win-less on the road.  Nick Young was the offense for the Wizards as he had 10 of their 19 points in the third quarter.

- Washington came into the game averaging 15.8 turnovers/game (4th worst in the NBA).  They only had seven turnovers on the evening (tying a season-low in turnovers). To the Mavericks credit, they forced Washington into six second-half turnovers.  Rashard Lewis had the most turnovers for the Wizards (four) and John Wall only had two turnovers in the game.

- The Mavericks had a case of the "We Can't Make Our Free Throws" on Monday night as they went 25-37 (67.6%) from the free throw line.  To make the evening more bizarre in that department, Tyson Chandler went 8-14 from the line.

- Brian Cardinal went 3-8 from the field (all shots were from three-point range) and tied his season-high in points with nine.  He reached nine points in the games against the San Antonio Spurs on December 30th and against the Orlando Magic on January 8th.  Monday marked a change in fortunes as they lost those two match-up when Cardinal scored nine points.

 

Tweetings From the Mavs Universe

- "Wizards Andre Blatche thought process on shot selection : I have the ball, I am awake, I believe I will shoot."

@notthefakeSVP

- "The combined vertical leap of the Mavs' starting lineup tonight is about 42 inches. Tyson Chandler accounts for 36 of that."

@espn_macmahon

- "John Wall is fast, even on the junk food diet."

@MikePradaSBN

- "Brendan Haywood just pointed to DAL bench & said, "I'll take Blatche." Think he knows something?"

@MrMichaelLee

- "Brian Cardinal wins the dome most like SVP in the NBA award. Prize for that....shame I think, right ?"

@notthefakeSVP

 

If You Don't Like What I Said, Read What They Said

- Rick Carlisle on how he felt during the first half: "I was pissed, really as pissed as I’ve been all year." 

- Jason Terry on responding to Rick Carlisle's using of a bullet to wake the team up: "We don’t want to make him use them, but when he does, we know what it means.  We responded well."

- Jason Terry on Tyson Chandler: "Come on man, Tyson is an All-Star...He is the best center in the west."

- Brian Cardinal on being a Maverick: "It’s a privilege to be here with the Mavs.  Anything I can do to help us win, whether it be diving on the floor, taking a charge or trying to get a stop on defense, I’ll be more than happy to do it."

- Tyson Chandler on lineup changes: "Anytime that you make a change, you get a worried a little bit, but the team stayed focused.  Brian Cardinal, the ultimate professional, was really knocking down some shots and turned the game around for us."

- DeShawn Stevenson on his former team: "I was there last year and it pretty much sucked. So, 0-23, that’s gotta be a bad feeling. So, we’ve just got to keep that streak going."

- Rick Carlisle on why he was so pissed: ""The reason I was pissed is because I care about these guys.  I believe in what we can be.  I’m going to tell them what’s on my mind.  I’m going to tell them what’s right and they can disagree if they want to, but I’m all about trying to help them win.  Right now, that’s all this is about."

 

BG's Baller of the Game:

Baller status has been granted to Tyson Chandler.  Coming in to the game against the Wizards, Chandler averaged 13.2 points and 9.3 rebounds in the month of January.  He put a pretty blue and white ribbon on the month with his 18 points and 18 rebounds in the Wizards game.  In a conference with a ton of depth, Tyson Chandler deserves to be rewarded for his hard work with an All-Star nomination from the coaches.  Monday's performance against the Wizards granted him baller status though it should be granted for his performance over the course of the month as well.

 

The Mavericks went undefeated on their four game home-stand.  Peja Stojakovic will not travel with the team as they continue to take a patient approach with the shooter.  "He's going through training camp right now. That's the way we're looking at it," Carlisle said. "We could throw him into the games, but, again, in our estimation it wouldn't be the right move for him or for us.  The knee is doing well.  It's conditioning, it's strength, it's integration to some degree.  For him, he can get a lot of his rhythm by doing some of these individual workouts and working on the things we do offensively and defensively.  Right now, we just feel this is the right thing."  As Stojakovic is in "Training Camp" mode, the Mavericks will hit the road and start a three game East Coast trip.  The trip will start with the New York Knicks on Wednesday night.  The game against the Knicks will tip off at 6:30 pm CST.

 

Twitter?  I don't even know her!  Oh......

You can stay connected with all things Dallas Mavericks by following Bryan Gutierrez on twitter @BallinWithBryan

 

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