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Game Recap: Denver Ices Dallas, 127-91

George Karl and the Denver Nuggets must be mile high as Chauncey Billups and Carmelo Anthony are both back for tonight’s home game against a mediocre Dallas team.  The slumping Mavericks face off against the second best team in the Western conference after needing 127 points just to put the Warriors away.  

Do the Mavericks limp to the finish line or power through for a win? 

Game as a Whole:

The game was over in the middle of the third when the Nuggets already had five players in double figures.  One can’t be all "doom and gloom" as this is just one game, but it is truly disheartening to know that at some point these same Mavericks will find themselves having to match up with the Nuggets if they make an extended playoff run. 

Will rest help Dallas regain some of the confidence that they have lost?  We can all pretend that this is the case but more than likely it is wishful thinking.  Dallas needs to get inspired again on the defensive end and learn to stop giving up 100+ points a game.  I am unsure if this is a Mavericks’ team that even knows how to win a game by keep their opponent in check through four quarters. 

1st Quarter:
  • Starting 5: Kidd, Terry, Najera, Nowitzki, Howard
  • Nuggets win the tip, but the Mavs are able to force a shot clock violation.
  • Dirk and Josh both miss their first shots.
  • 10:22, Kidd makes a three to get the Mavs on the board.
  • Dirk takes a rare three, and misses. The Nuggets are up 10-3 already. Carlisle takes a quick time out.
  • Terry misses his first jumpshot. Maybe we consider taking it to the basket?
  • 8:38, They take my advice and Howard drives to the basket. He is fouled and makes both.
  • 8:14, Kidd makes a characteristic pass down low to Najera who lays it in.
  • 7:37, Dirk makes HIS characteristic contested jumper over Allen.
  • 5:59, Terry makes a slightly wild drive in the lane, but it pays off when he gets fouled. He makes them both. Mavericks are now down 7.
  • 5:32, After a good defensive hustle from Kidd, he sends it to Dirk who puts it in for two.
  • 4:45, Terry is really sacrificing his body and it’s working out well. He gets fouled again and gets another two.
  • Andersen is in the game for Denver, and their announcers are discussing his lack of hair product.
  • 4:25, Howard makes a quick layup and the Mavericks are on an 8-0 run, bringing them within one.
  • 2:49, The Mavericks are starting to understand the concept… Dirk drives into the lane and gets fouled. These free throws are keeping us in the game, as he makes both.
  • Will this be another 30-point first quarter for a Mavericks opponent?
  • 1:37, Dirk makes another jumper, keeping them within 6.
  • Welcome back Carmelo Anthony. Two shots for six points.
  • The answer is yes, the Nuggets will score 32 in the first. 
2nd Quarter:
  • 11:06, Dirk takes an awkward shot and gets fouled, but the announcers call it an "All-Star call". Mavericks are 12 of 12 from behind the line, and they are ranked 1st in the NBA for free throw percentage.
  • 9:10, Singleton gives the Mavericks their first points in a long while with a pull-up jumper.
  • The Nuggets are making easy work of the Mavericks’ defense. Mavericks down 14 with over 7 minutes left in the half.
  • This may be some of the worst basketball I’ve seen them play. There’s nothing good to note. Nuggets are up by 21 points. Mavericks are missing shots, turning over the ball, and weak on defense.
  • 5:37, Terry’s three-pointer is the first score in 4 minutes for Dallas.
  • 4:39, Dirk finally gets one to fall in the second quarter.
  • 4:13, Dirk with a much-needed and-1 with the foul from Andersen.
  • 3:06, Kidd gets a quick steal. We need more ego-boosting plays like that.
  • Even prayer shots are falling for the Nuggets. On a hard foul from Kidd, NeNe puts in a circus shot.
  • 2:03, Howard puts in a jumper. Keep it up.
  • 1:36, Is this a run? Gooden puts one in close from Terry.
  • Mavericks end the half looking simply atrocious. Shots aren’t falling, and defense isn’t effective. Let’s hope they get a good talking-to from Carlisle in the locker room.
3rd Quarter:
  • Josh is attacking the basket but there is nobody under it to rebound or try for a second chance basket. 
  • 10:17, Proving my point, Howard misses a shot but then follows up his own miss with a put back. 
  • 9:30, Terry’s two-point basket is like a drop in the bucket.  Affalo hits a three pointer on the other end due to a poor rotation. 
  • 7:42, 8 of 13 from the three point line on the night for the Nuggets.  Dallas has come out in the second half with a nonchalant attitude. 
  • 7:27, Gooden hits two free throws thanks to a Malik Allen blocking foul.  Denver is still up by 30. 
  • 6:33, Howard makes Carmelo work harder than he has all night to get a shot off.  Shot doesn’t go down and Howard gets a quick basket on the other end. 
  • 5:15, Denver announcer says "Kidd isn’t a great shooter" even when his partner just stated that Kidd is shooting 41% from the three point line.  That is only 1% less than Beaubois has and good for second best on the team (discounting Dampier and Najera).
  • 3:03, Nowitzki gets the ball poked away.  I don’t know how Kidd isn’t calling that out to him as he is trying to back down Andersen.  Dallas doesn’t even look like they are trying to win the game. 
  • 2:51, Two free throws for Terry and it doesn’t even look like the Maverick side of the scoreboard is moving.  Barea is now in the game. 
  • Poor rotation again foils the Dallas attempt to get any closer to the Nuggets. 
  • 1:27, The human surrender flag (Matt Carroll) officially comes into the game before the fourth quarter has even begun. 
4th Quarter:
  • It’s time for the bench to get some major minutes. 
  • 10:39, Singleton gets the easiest steal of his life.  Matt Carroll misses a three badly.
  • I think this might be great footage for the Mavericks lowlight reel.  Everyone agree?
  • 9:22, Barea with a three and it doesn’t even matter. 
  • 9:10, Petro comes down the lane and it is like the red sea parting.  Nobody contests the shot. 
  • 8:02, Barea haphazardly tosses a shot off of the backboard (trying to avoid the contact). 
  • 7:32, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the first offensive rebound of the game for the Mavericks.
  • 6:43, After a made Beaubois basket Denver announcer says "looks like he has a slow trigger".  I really don’t like these guys. 
  • 5:58, That’s a three for Ross but Lawson negates it with a great lay up. 
  • Every Nugget except for Anthony Carter has scored in the game. 
  • 4:28, Najera saves the ball in on a Matt Carroll fumble, it goes right to a Nugget. 
  • 3:41, Okay, every Nugget has scored now as Carter makes a basket. 
  • 3:21, Carroll grabs a basket on a nice move. 
  • 2:44, Singleton with a three pointer.  Mavericks aren’t even going to crack 100 in this game. 

Some Choice Statistics:

  • The Mavericks had 8 turnovers in the first half.  
  • Dallas shoots only 32% from the field in the first and second quarter. 
  • The highest point total given up by Dallas this season was 131 (Los Angeles Lakers 01/03).

Closing Thoughts:

Mark Cuban has to be itching for a trade of some sort.