The division rival Grizzlies head to Dallas for yet another pre-season match up. The game starts at 7:30 CT and should be on Fox Sports Southwest
Why should we watch another pre-season game?
Well... uhhh... basketball! Dirk! Monta! The Mavs dancers!
The best reason I have is the return of the fantastic Mark Followill to the booth. He's been on other assignments for the first part of pre-season and Chuck Cooperstein has done a heck of a job holding the fort. But I miss Mark; he's one of the best play-by-play guys in all of sports. At some point he's going to get snatched up by a national media group, so we should appreciate him while we can.
Other than that, you should watch to get an early look at the Memphis Grizzlies. They always play Dallas very tough and should compete with the Mavs for playoff positioning.
What should we look for? These games don't really matter, you know.
I've been keeping an eye out for Dirk's new shot mechanics. Initially, I was terrified...I mean, if it isn't broke, why fix it? But thus far, it looks the same, just faster. A more lethal Dirk is a more fun Dirk. The starters should get at least a quarter and a half together, so continuing to watch how they blend and figure out one another's strengths and weaknesses should be fun.
We've talked at length about how the back end of the bench is still up for grabs, so watching who gets minutes and who doesn't starts to matter as we get closer to the regular season.
You haven't talked about Vince Carter yet. Why not?
Because I'm not willing to discuss it yet. I haven't fully processed through the grief of losing Vince. There's a lot to be said here and I'm really not the person to say it. I suspect once we get to a regular season matchup and the game actually matters, we might have more to say as a group. For now, just know that Carter is a member of the Grizzlies and they are paying him a LOT of money for his age.
What do the Mavericks need to do to call this game a success?
We've already been over the fact that winning and losing don't really matter when as many as 20 different people may see game action. So for the starters, I'd like to see them hang 30-35 points on the stout Memphis defense in the first quarter. For the bench, I'd really like to see Greg Smith look good against a rough and tumble front line. I'd also like to see Gal Mekel keep playing at a reasonable level. Anything past that from other guys is just gravy.