Welcome back, Dirty. Sorry it ended this way. - Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
This was one of the more unfortunate games I've witnessed. But hey... Dirk is back! So there's hope...
Dirk is back.
The rest of this is inconsequential, because Dirk is back.
Unbeknownst to media, Dirk Nowitzki decided to give it a go. Imagine our surprise when he was in the layup lines before the game. He checked in with just under seven minutes left in the first to a chorus of boos from the Spurs crowd, and immediately grabbed a rebound.
Welcome back, überman.
And here's your recap:
Really all I care to share with you is that Dirk's first points came off of a transition two-handed jam. Other than that, it was interesting to see how the other players reacted to having him back on the floor. We got to witness our first Dirk/OJ pick and roll, and it was successful. Elton Brand also made his return from a groin strain, but wasn't all that effectual in the first quarter. They hung in with Danny Green shooting lights out from three to be down 33-26 after one.
Chris Douglas-Roberts came in to start the second quarter, giving fans a first look at the D-League call-up. He didn't really do much other than get trapped on the sideline and turn the ball over. The Mavs hung around offensively, but they were having difficulty defending the three (9-14), and Tony Parker. As for Dirk, he found himself at the top of the key and thought HEY I think I'll shoot a three. And he made it. And then, back down the floor, he hit his patented Euro-leanback and it went in. *fap* Halftime came around and the Spurs led 64-52, but it didn't feel quite so dire because, you know, Dirk.
The second half started with a lot of scrambling. Turnovers and fumbles and near-touchdown passes. Oh, and more Danny Green threes. Then the Mavericks started to have difficulty making shots... they went a good eight minutes without a made bucket. They were still shooting above the league average but were getting destroyed. The lead ballooned to 34, primarily because the Spurs could not miss. Like even Stephen Jackson was getting in on the three-point fun. The quarter ended with the Mavericks trailing 100-64.
I pretty much stopped paying attention in the fourth quarter. Really all I got out of that was that Carlisle was cussing up a storm during timeouts, and put reserves (plus Dominique Jones) in for essentially the entire final period. Dirk played 20 minutes, scored 8 points and pulled in 6 rebounds in a respectable if unfortunate debut.
Some Sad Bullets:
- The Spurs hit 20 three-pointers in the game, setting a franchise high, and scoring the most threes by a Mavericks' opponent.
- That's it. Honest to goodness. There was nothing of note in this game.