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Mavericks Offense Goes Cold in Loss to Portland

Portland goes on a 20-point swing in the second and third quarters, and Dallas looked like the team that played an overtime game the night before, not the Blazers.

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks looked like the team that played on the second night of a back-to-back Thursday night in the Rose Garden.

But they were the ones with two days off.

Yet the Mavericks' offense was beyond cold, shooting 37 percent from the floor as Dallas lost 94-75 to Portland, giving away a great chance to move up in the Western Conference standings.

Dallas got off to a great start in the first quarter, jumping out to a 23-17 lead. The Mavericks had a balanced scoring attack and played great defense, led by Al-Farouq Aminu's five points and active hands.

But much like the first meeting at Portland on Nov. 6, the Blazers found a way to make a run and the Mavs found a way to not figure out how to make a shot. Despite a silent first half from Damian Lillard, star big man LaMarcus Aldridge had 15 points at halftime.

With the score tied at 40-40 early in the third quarter, Lillard made three straight baskets, including back-to-back threes, to give the Blazers a 50-44 lead in the matter of moments.

Thanks to Dallas' ineffectiveness to make a jump shot, that's really all Portland needed to put this game away midway through the third quarter.

Monta Ellis led all Maverick scorers with 12 points, and he shot 5-of-20 to get those 12 points. He hasn't been the same since that hip injury he suffered before the All-Star break, and this game further proves that he hasn't fully recovered. Dirk Nowitzki had 10 points on 5-of-13 shooting and was 0-for-4 from 3-point range.

The only one who appeared to remotely care on the offensive end was Amar'e Stoudemire, who provided a glimmer of hope in the second half. Stoudemire finished with 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting, once again proving that he's been nothing short of spectacular since arriving in Dallas.

Rajon Rondo was the only other Maverick to score in double figures, scoring 10 points while also recording nine assists and grabbing seven rebounds. The majority of those numbers came in garbage time. For the most part, Rondo had another ho-hum performance. The aggressive play that was on display in the win over New Orleans was non-existent for the final three quarters. Rondo had three assists in the first quarter, but did nothing else in the final three to make an impact on the game.

It wasn't the prettiest night offensively for either Dallas or Portland. The Trail Blazers shot 41 percent, which wasn't that far off compared to Dallas' abysmal shooting performance. The problem for the Mavericks was not taking advantage of a depleted Portland team that had to come back and win in overtime at the Staples Center the night before.

With two days off to rest, Dallas missed a golden opportunity to move into sole possession of fifth in the Western Conference, but appeared to be the ones that played a hard-fought game against the Los Angeles Clippers.

And somehow, the Mavericks have to find some sort of way to put this behind them and go on the road Friday night and play the Golden State Warriors, where Stephen Curry is waiting for them.

The last time Dallas and Golden State were in Oakland, Curry scored 51 points on Feb. 4 against Dallas. Albeit, that was without Rondo and the Mavericks were bound to give up that 22-point lead at some point.

So that's what lies for a Mavericks team that blew a huge opportunity. They need Chandler Parsons ASAP.