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Minnesota is in town tonight as Dallas tries to avoid a four game losing streak and get their defense back on track. The Timberwolves aren't a bad team to have in town in that regard. They score the second fewest points in the conference per game (93.4) and are 21st in the NBA in offensive efficiency.

Actually, the Timberwolves are bad at everything, and the Mavs have no reason to not win tonight by about 15.

Eddie Sefko thinks the losing streak might spark Avery to make some changes in the starting lineup.

The Mavericks have gotten little out of DeSagana Diop the last few games and could give Erick Dampier or Brandon Bass a look as the starting center.

In addition, the revolving door at shooting guard might be ready to spin again.
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Jeff Caplan writes about the Mavs defense and how Avery thinks a lack of communication is to blame.
He said vocal leadership starts with the center and point guard, the anchor and head of the defense, and trickles down, but it's not consistently happening.

The communication issue is not new and remains perplexing for Johnson, who has been pushing his team to talk forcefully on the court.

"Avery's goal is to get more player leadership," co-captain Dirk Nowitzki said. "He can't be on our case all season long; that just kind of wears on you over the long season. It's time for players to step up and talk about what they see out there."
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Avery is a little concerned about the team playing down to their opponents.
"It sure seems like it," coach Avery Johnson said. "The guys have talked about it and they feel they want to try to do a better job of having consistent concentration, consistent effort."
It sounds like Dirk understands that.
"We see we’re not good enough to coast," he said Tuesday after practice. "That’s what we need to learn from this. We need to play hard on both ends of the floor for 48 minutes. If we don’t, we can lose to anybody, on the road or at home."
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Jim Reeves has an annoying article where he tries to make Golden State a verb.

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This Day in Mavs History
2003 The NBA suspended Danny Fortson for 3 games for his flagrant foul on Zarko Cabarkapa (Pho) during the 11/26/03 Phoenix game.
Cabarkapa broke his wrist on that play, and most thought the three game suspension was far too light.