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Sunday Links

Mavs are at Portland tonight trying to get badly needed win streak going. Portland will be without Brandon Roy and Raef LaFrentz. The win against Phoenix has instilled enough faith in me to place a bet on the Mavs tonight. If the Mavs lose or win by less than six I'll be writing a 500 word essay for truehoop.com about the greatness of the Portland Trail Blazers. If the Mavs cover the spread then Henry Abbott will grace Mavs Moneyball with the same.

Henry made the same bet with ClipperBlog.com last week, and when the Blazers lost the results were quite entertaining.

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Mark Cuban was wearing a 'What Would David Do' t-shirt at the Suns game. Craig Sager almost certainly talked about it, but I must have zoned out.

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Art Garcia has a good five item list of what 's been wrong with the Mavs.

3) Greg Buckner, Devean George, Anthony Johnson and Austin Croshere were solid veteran pickups. As for picking up the system, they've been shaky at times.

The positives that come along with being established in this league have led to several adjustment issues. For instance: The techniques used by the new Mavs to guard the pick-and-roll, pass out of double-teams and space the court don't jibe with those in Avery Johnson's system.

But it's not as if they won't pick it up. They're too smart not to. It's just not second nature yet.
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Ira Winderman of the Sun-Sentinel seems to question the Mavs offseason moves.
While the Heat has been relatively slow out of the gate, it remains a known quantity, with 13 of the 15 players back from last season's championship roster.

Dallas, by contrast, fiddled with its depth after burning a 2-0 lead in last season's Finals.

Out went Keith Van Horn, Marquis Daniels, Adrian Griffin, Darrell Armstrong and a few end-of-the-bench spare parts. In came Anthony Johnson, Devean George, Greg Buckner and Austin Croshere.

On paper, the moves appeared to make a deep rotation even deeper. But such tinkering also impacts chemistry. It certainly did for the Heat last season during its 10-10 start.
If memory serves, Miami went on to win it all so I'm not sure where he's going with that.

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On the other side of the continent, Joe Stevens of the LA Daily News thinks the Mavs will be just fine.
The Dallas Mavericks have succumbed to adversity, and their "dynasty" is over. Expect Mark Cuban to go through some type of "missing crisis" the entire season.

Goodbye, winners.

Hello, losers.

OK. Is the sarcasm understood?

It has been easy for fans and writers and anybody who follows the NBA to jump to conclusions about the Mavericks' 0-4 start until they finally beat the Suns on Thursday.

But before that happens, take this advice: Don't jump.
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I liked this note at the bottom of Eddie Sefko's article this morning.
Jerry Stackhouse has started back-to-back games and is averaging 17.5 points on 54 percent shooting. He's also taking it upon himself to spoon-feed rookie Moe Ager on the ins and outs of the NBA. "I'm not going to be one of those old veterans that holds things back," Stackhouse said. "I'm going to teach him everything I can."
Good to hear.

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And David Moore takes a look at NBA salaries.