Well. It was a win. That's cool, right?
Honestly, that's really the only thing to take away from Monday night's Mavericks/Hornets preseason matchup. Dallas won 87-74, the Hornets looked bad and the Mavericks didn't completely shit themselves. I'd say they sharted. But a really smelly shart.
The Mavericks remained in control throughout the game. Elton Brand set the tone early with five points in the quarter and Dallas led 25-10 (he also set the tone late by missing a bunch of easy shots later.)
New Orleans could never recover from the abysmal first quarter. The Hornets kept firing, kept missing, fired some more, then Austin Rivers got hurt (:-(), then Ryan Anderson made some threes, Shawn Marion took Anthony Davis' mother out to a nice seafood dinner and never called her again, then the second half happened and MY GOD KILL IT. KILL THE BAD BASKETBALL WITH A METAPHORICAL FIRE.
So yeah, it wasn't pretty. Dallas won. Hooray. Here are the bullets:
- I'm sure people are going to spin this as a marvelous defensive performance for Dallas, but outside of Shawn Marion being fantastic, this was more New Orleans just being inept. The Hornets shot 33.3 percent but had plenty of open looks. The Mavericks still have some work to do in getting their rotations down. If they are still this slow getting to shooters and allowing post players this easy of position against a more competent team, they'll go down hard.
- Seriously though, Shawn Marion? That was fun to watch. Anthony Davis was 2 of 12 from the floor and looked completely flustered.
- This rebounding thing is going to suck. The Hornets manhandled the undersized Mavs on the boards, winning the battle 62-40. The offensive boards? 20-4. FOUR! AND DALLAS SHOT 36 PERCENT. So it's not like there weren't a lot of opportunities to grab some. I understand Dallas is hurting without Dirk and Chris Kaman, but come on. Vince Carter should not be your third best rebounder without them (and at times, second.)
- When Vince Carter shoots only three-pointers, I smile.
- O.J. Mayo is trying, so that's good. A rough shooting night, but he had some good looks and tried to create off the bounce. He once again looked a little lost on defense, forgetting where his man is if he had to stay out on the perimeter for too long but hopefully it'll get better. He was 4 of 16 and took some bad threes but overall, I liked his effort.
- Elton Brand made 3 of 8 shots and at least four of his five misses were completely wide open. I'm really happy that Brand is finding open spots on the floor, but these easy misses are starting to worry me.
- THE MAVERICKS ONLY HAD 10 TURNOVERS. CELEBRATE. REJOICE. LET THE TRUMPETS BLARE AND THE WINE FLOW AS WE FEAST AND DINE TO OUR HEARTS CONTENT.
- Since the European preseason games, Darren Collison hasn't been looking for his shot too much. It won't be a real problem when Dirk Nowitzki is healthy, but for these three to six weeks, Dallas will need more scoring from him. He did look great on the fastbreak and had seven assists to two turnovers. Just need to try to get more than five shots up.
- I think the Mavericks have decided Dominique Jones has no place on this roster anymore. Only two mop-up minutes tonight.
- Considering the Mavericks draft history in the last 12 years, the drafting of Jae Crowder in the second round is an effing miracle.
- Seriously, I'm not sure I've never been more excited about a kid after a 3 for 8 shooting performance. Crowder finished with 12 points, four rebounds and four assists and just looks like he'll be a pretty damn good basketball player. He has great instincts and a wonderful basketball IQ.
- Rodrigue Beaubois looked pretty chipper tonight. Glad to see he's over the ankle injury, he was moving well.