Two months ago, the Mavericks were opening the NBA season with a blowout loss to the Heat. It's been a bit of a roller coaster since then, but somehow here the Mavericks are, sitting at 21-13 record at the All-Star break. Here's part one of what the MMB staff saw in that first half.
Tom: The biggest surprise has been Brandan Wright, and his lack of stable playing time. Wright has had sensational slams in many games, high energy, and seems to be a magnet for rebounds. Instead, the proven inefficiency of Lamar Odom and aging veteran Brian Cardinal get time instead of young and capable Wright. Wright has almost no drawbacks that can be seen when he plays, but Rick Carlisle is hesitant to see him play. It will take something of a large proportion to get Wright stable playing time.
Tim: No one doubted that Delonte West was going to bring some toughness and grit to this team, but I didn't realize just how big of a factor he was going to be. His injury really showed his effectiveness, partially because there is little good depth behind him, but also equal parts because he brings a unique brand of guard play that really helps the Mavs offense when they otherwise would be struggling.