Alright, I've come to realize something. I am not the "biggest Mavericks fan", as I have claimed before. After all, which "biggest fan" misses a preseason game! I mean, come on! That's just ridiculous.
Since I did not watch the game, this will not be the most comprehensive recap. Feel free to chime in with what you thought of the game, more so today than usual. Before the jump, I'm mainly going to focus on the Chandler/Haywood debate.
- Surprising to me, but Tyson Chandler got another start. I think this start had more to do with Dirk and Terry sitting in his previous one, but maybe the coaches are trying to tell us something. If you can ignore Chandler's 0-5 night from the line, he played alright, getting a couple inside buckets and coverting on a now patented lob pass from Kidd. He still is fouling way too much, too early. 2 in the first 5 minutes just won't cut it, and he's doing it consistently.
- This is a reason why Chandler should come off the bench, for those wondering: on the bench, there is much more flexibility for him to use his fouls, and more flexibility for the Mavericks if he gets in foul trouble. Of course, if I was arguing the other way, I'd say that Chandler's skill set fits better with a point guard like Jason Kidd on the floor. I still don't think that Chandler will start opening night, but it makes sense that the coaching staff is at least evaluating how he does on the starting lineup, mainly with Kidd.
- In response to Chandler starting this game, Haywood goes out and puts up 5 points and 8 boards (3 offensive) in only 16 minutes, swatting a couple with only two fouls throughout the game. Good to see that he did more than pout, but actually went out and played well. If Chandler ever got the start, I'd expect the same.
- Besides those two players, there was no notable stat lines for anyone. The Mavericks shot 37% as a team, and it showed, with the entire bench combining for a 14 of 44 shooting performance. I guess that is the story: nobody who is suppose to score did.
- I've read Brian Cardinal is closing in on gaining a spot on this team, but then you look at the box score and ask, how can that be? He had 2 points total, missed four three pointers, grabbed four rebounds in 14 minutes, and besides that, had an empty statline. Well, the Mavericks know he can shoot; they've seen him in practice and in camp, and they know that its only a matter of time until he starts doing it in games. Meanwhile, he's boxing out, hustling, and has drawn four charges in two games, now. I suppose that makes sense: take the guy who can do more than just shoot. I just hope the Mavericks know he will start shooting.
- Quick Steve Novak update: 3-5 on FG's, but both misses were three point attempts. He's going to have to really light it up these next few games to make it a contest, I think.
- I'll close on Dominique Jones. Once again starting today, he was no better than any other preseason game. 2-9 shooting, and unlike some previous games where he took four or five jumpers, seven of his nine attempts were within a few feet. For someone who lived on the drive and finishing strong, he has not been doing it. The four boards and four assists are nice, but I think it will take a while before his scoring becomes more efficient (a jumper, even a below average one, would help), and until that happens, he's going to limited appearances. (update: Carlisle said some good things about Dojo, though. I didn't watch the game, and so I'm just assuming. He may have been more unlucky this game with foul calls and whatnot, I don't know.)