Defense. We’ve seen it as it should be in the Dallas victories, and even seen glimpses of it in their losses. We’ve also seen the result of what happens when it’s missing. Tonight, as the Dallas Mavericks take on the Golden State Warriors in Oakland, it will be interesting to see if defense makes an appearance. The Mavs have won two out of the three meetings with the 20-51 Warriors this season. Monta Ellis has served as the perennial thorn in Dallas’ side, and rookie Stephen Curry was a force to be reckoned with when last these two teams met. Golden State is young and quick, and could serve as a spoiler to the veteran Dallas team’s efforts to clinch second place in the Western Conference.
Can the Mavericks keep the Warriors at bay, or will their defense sit this one out, too?
Game as a Whole:
I’m not sure what team came to play tonight, but I like them whoever they are! The Mavericks put on an offensive clinic, shooting 48% from the field and a ridiculous 53% from beyond the arc. This stat was made possible by the talented rookie, Rodrique Beaubois, who came in late in the first and proved why he’s the man for the job. He was the story line of the night, scoring a career high (and incredible) 40 points, going 9 of 11 from three-point land. Adding to the fun was the fact that he tied the record for most threes made against the Golden State Warriors.
So what exactly happened? Well, early in the first quarter, Brendan Haywood, who got the start at center tonight, apparently jammed his thumb. Carlisle sent Najera and Roddy in, and the Mavericks played some scrappy small ball. Eddie Najera, who is a defensive pest, contributed on offense as well tonight with three three-pointers. The stat lines filled out nicely, with everyone getting touches and scores. Kidd had an impressive 11 assists, and his protégé Roddy reeled in 8 rebounds. Superstar Dirk gave a solid performance with 13 points and 10 rebounds, and Marion quietly scored 18 on the night. The team was clicking the way they have in their most impressive victories this year, and it showed in the final score.
Let’s Look at the Quarters.
(Apologies- the internet at this hotel in Boston is terrible.)
- Haywood gets the start, the Warriors win the tipoff.
- 11:18, Caron Butler opens the game for the Mavericks with a three pointer.
- 9:53, Marion misses an inside shot, but Turiaf gets called for a goal tend.
- 8:57, Ellis quickly picks up his second foul. It would be nice to get rid of him early…
- 8:00, Haywood gets fouled going to the basket. (Golden State commits the most fouls in the NBA.) He splits the free throws.
- 5:15, Dirk gets the ball to go on an and-one. He has a rare miss from the line.
- Maggette is having an excellent shooting night so far.
- 4:18, Marion hits a "praying mantis" jumper (quoth the Warriors announcers).
- 3:35, Dirk gets a strip and Haywood gets a block for a solid defensive set.
- Rodrigue Beaubois comes in at the 2 after a time out for the Mavs. This is the earliest we’ve seen him in a while.
- 2:07, Kidd gets a sneaky steal, as is his style. Mavericks can’t convert.
- 1:31, Roddy gets some points on the board!
- 1:11, Roddy runs the length of the court on a fast break and takes it to the hoop, with the foul. He makes the three-point play and the Mavs take the lead.
- :43.5, Najera makes his second three point basket.
- :21.6, Kidd makes a ridiculously long bounce pass to Terry, who hits on the jumper.
- :06.3, Terry makes another jumper from the wing. The Mavericks had a great offensive turnaround to end the first quarter.
- Najera starts the quarter with a travel.
- 11:12, Roddy makes a beautiful three. He’s really fighting for his floor time.
- Barea comes in to relieve Kidd, leaving Roddy on the floor. Mavs are playing small ball.
- 10:41, Beaubois takes matters into his own hands with another gorgeous three. Mavericks are 6-8 from beyond the arc.
- 9:49, Dirk with his classic turnaround jumper. He gets a shooter’s roll.
- 7:48, JJ Barea adds a three to the impressive team total.
- 7:33, Roddy has a beautiful block on the defensive end.
- 6:58, Dirk hits a jumper. The Mavericks are looking strong.
- 6:30, JJ makes a speedy drive to the basket for the lay-in.
- 4:40, Roddy is feeling it. He’s got 16 off the bench.
- 4:14, The Warriors have no answer to Roddy. He leads all scorers with 19 after a made three.
- 3:18, WOW Roddy! Another three! He’s 5 of 5!
- 2:13, Marion scores on a fast break after he takes it coast to coast. The Warriors are getting schooled tonight.
- 1:01, Beaubois has gotten a career high in one half with a lay-up. 26 points in 15 minutes.
(The broadband is awful again)
- 10:06, Najera is shooting lights out. He has more threes made than the entire Warrior team.
- 8:20, Dirk makes a three. Seriously?
- 6:41, Kidd with the monster alley-oop to the Matrix.
- 5:57, Marion hits the short jumper. Mavericks are up by 30.
- 1:16, Roddy gets his sixth three-pointer of the night from the baseline.
- :21.5, There was a Matrix dunk for the ages.
(Never staying in a hotel again. HORRIBLE internet.)
- 9:51, Marion is 8-10. He lays it in with the assist from Roddy Buckets.
- 8:46, You can’t stop Roddy when he’s on a roll. The rookie has 31 points on the night.
- 7:33, Terry hits a smooth jumper with an assist from Stevenson.
- Matt Carroll joins the fun! He shows off his stifling defense. And then falls down driving to the hole.
- 5:40, Curry is trying to keep his head up. He hits a three.
- 4:42, Roddy hits another three, just for shits and giggles.
- 3:17, Najera is such a pest, in the best possible way. He gets a quick strip.
- 3:12, Matty C shoots a pair of free throws.
- Apparently Roddy got his 8th three of the night, but my broadband cut out so I missed it. 80% from three? We’ll take it.
- 1:16, Rodrigue Beaubois gets a 40-point game, tying the record for most threes made against the Warriors.
Some Choice Statistics
- The most points scored by a rookie in a game was 58, by none other than Wilt Chamberlain.
- The most three-point field goals scored in a game was 12 by Kobe Bryant and Donyell Marshall.
If this doesn’t earn Roddy Buckets some more playing time, I don't know what will.