Last year, we went in chronological order naming the 12 most important stories involving the Mavericks by month. We've reached the end of 2015 and to mix things up a bit, this year will be ranked by month. It only feels appropriate.
Missed among the Rondo debacle was this wonderful moment during the Rockets series. Make sure you didn't miss it.
We finally realized that the current Mavericks team wasn't all that good. Or maybe it was just that we'd never know how good or bad they were. Either way, it was a gloomy month of March for the Mavericks.
Is a hot dog a sandwich? Maverick players answered. More importantly, though, Dallas
With a 3-point shot against the Brooklyn Nets, Dirk Nowitzki passed Moses Malone to become the No. 7 all-time scorer in NBA history. After passing Elvin Hayes in late 2014, Dirk quickly jumped past another historically great player of years past and assumed what would likely be his penultimate place on the Mavericks' scoring list.
Also, most of the Mavericks died when they tried to travel the Oregon Trail and Rajon Rondo returned home to Boston with one of his best games in a Mavericks uniform. We also established how much better he plays with a headband.
Bookending the year with Dirk passing huge scoring milestones only seems appropriate. Again against the Nets in the Barclays Center, Dirk became the No. 6 all-time scorer by passing Shaquille O'Neal.
Although we were pining for R.J. Hunter, we've all been very pleased with Justin Anderson, the Mavericks' first round draft pick. After a rough decade with some major misses, we think Dallas finally hit on someone. Also: Dirk lost in his own Heroes Celebrity Game.
Dirk Nowitzki dunked in the All-Star Game. Wait, hold that, rewind: Dirk ALLEY OOP DUNKED in the All-Star Game. Wait, let's reset this again: Dirk ALLEY OOP DUNKED in the All-Star Game, his first alley oop in MORE THAN A DECADE. And then through in a Vince Carter tribute celebration afterwards.
There was another important story that month, involving Rajon Rondo's blowup at and subsequent benching by Rick Carlisle. We covered the saga in-depth, telling Rondo that this wasn't about him and looking back at his long history of feuding with his coaches. Ultimately, as we saw, it didn't matter.
Also that month: we ranked Whataburger items.
What a month of Mavericks basketball. There was a ridiculous double overtime win where Raymond Felton proved to be the hero (which looks less weird after seeing how well he has played this season). There was a disappointing five-game series against the Houston Rockets, where Chandler Parsons went down with an injury in Game 1 that proved to be the microfracture surgery he needed over the summer. Our coverage for that series was on point, if I may say so myself. Leading up to the playoffs, there was even a fantastic Dirk dirty joke that, at the time, we thought might bring Dallas together as a team.
But no. April was dedicated to Rajon Rondo and his infamous playoff dismissal. Just hours after he walked out without speaking to media, we knew the trade had failed for good.
We all knew this was coming in first. Many, many things happened, if we're being honest, including sign-and-trade rumors galore, but all we knew is that DeAndre Jordan was a Maverick. And Dallas had a future. And a probably drunk Cuban and Chandler were thrilled in an unnamed street. And the Mavericks didn't have to tank. F--- yes.
Then the story flipped. The Clippers wanted Jordan back, news broke on the morning of July 8. We spent the rest of the day watching an emoji war, trying to understand what was happening and even speculating whether the Mavericks had legal grounds to sue (even though no, obviously they weren't).
A team came together, somehow, in the wake of Jordan's reversal. Deron Williams and Zaza Pachulia joined Parsons, Matthews and Dirk. In the grand scheme of things, Dallas recovered remarkably. Still, there was no bigger story in Dallas sports and hardly even a bigger story on that one day in basketball itself. Maybe, now that the Mavericks have found a way to stay afloat despite this all, we can look back at that month without being upset anymore.