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Back to life again today - for many of us and for the Mavs too. The poorly named Charlotte Bobcats are in town for a 7:30 tipoff.

Onto the links...

Sefko has a pretty good article on Josh Howard cementing himself as the teams number 2.

He's averaging a career-best 18.7 points. He's also posting 5.4 rebounds, 1.21 steals and 1.26 blocks per game. He's one of only six players in the league averaging at least 1.2 steals and blocks, joining Minnesota's Kevin Garnett, Chicago's Ben Wallace, Miami's Dwyane Wade, Phoenix's Shawn Marion and Atlanta's Josh Smith.
In years prior I've never thought Josh Howard should be on the all-star team. Not because I didn't think he deserved it, but because the group of forwards in the West was just too hard to crack. Carmelo hasn't even made an all-star team yet.

Last year the forwards from the West were Elton Brand, Tim Duncan, Dirk, Garnett, Shawn Marion, and Tracy McGrady. The only player on the list who didn't deserve to be there was Tracy McGrady, who had been hurt most of the season. He was voted in by the fans.

Well this year McGrady is on the ballot as a guard and I think Howard should get and possibly could get a trip to Vegas. Dirk, Garnett, Duncan, and Carmelo are all locks to be on the team. Right now Duncan and Garnett are the starters with Dirk 20,000 votes behind. The team is allowed six forwards on the roster and that leaves Elton Brand, Josh Howard, and Shawn Marion battling for the final two spots. The odds are still against him, but I'd like to see it happen.

You can vote here

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Sefko had a good article on Avery Johnson in yesterday's paper.

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Short Bobcats game preview

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Art Garcia's article today is on Devean George and it seems to be an extension of Sefko's Saturday peice.

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And David DuPree from USA Today breaks down Erick Dampier. It's always interesting reading the thoughts of a national writer and Dupree does pretty well. He mistakenly says that Dampier's go-to move is a baby hook. It is a shot he tries quite often but it's not all that good. Dupree does understand how Damp has to be defended.
When he does get the ball, be physical right back at him and try to make him put it on the floor.
There is not stat for this, but I'd be willing to bet that Dampier's FG% is lower than 40 on possessions that he dribbles the ball.