Boy, have the Mavs had a tough stretch. I don't think I realized that they have played the most games of any team this month before putting together this piece, and tonight is ANOTHER back-to-back.... this one basically amounting to a schedule loss as they'll face a full-strength Warriors squad with Dirk and Zaza out. Thanks, schedulers!
They've also played lord knows how many overtime games. Not that that one is on the schedulers, of course.
Rankers this week liked Chandler Parsons and Rick Carlisle, had some fun with the fact that Zaza Pachulia almost got voted into the All-Star game, and generally stayed neutral on rankings, collectively. I'm a bit surprised none of them mentioned Salah Mejri! Overall, some moved the Mavs up a tad; some down a tad.
These rankings do not reflect last night's win over the Lakers, and as always, you can read the full ranks for any site by clicking "what they said." Let us know what you think of their thoughts and ranks in the comments!
This week: 13 Last week: 14
Chandler Parsons is increasingly looking like a player who has found top gear after a bumpy first few months recovering from offseason knee surgery. Trouble is, Dallas' defensive deficiencies are starting to be exposed routinely, dragging Rick Carlisle's club back to something closer to the level we all expected before the Mavs' coach coaxed an unforeseen 19-13 start out of this group.
This week: 7 Last week: 7
They're almost through their rough stretch and they've come out pretty clean. The Rick Carlisle Mavericks are basically unkillable. They're Boris the Bullet-Dodger from the movie "Snatch."
This week: 16 Last week: 15
Zaza Pachulia almost got voted into the All-Star Game and if voting went for another couple of weeks, maybe Salah Mejri could have made a run too. Mejri sparked a big comeback (that came up short) against the Thunder (his block on Kevin Durant was the highlight) on Friday and started in Houston on Sunday. The Mavs have played the most games (14) in January and have their fifth back-to-back of the month this week.
This week: 10 Last week: 13
The Mavs handed the Warriors a 23-point defeat a month ago with Stephen Curry sitting out, but should face a motivated, full-strength team on Wednesday in Oakland. Expect some fireworks, one way or the other.
This week: 10 Last week: 9
Good at giving the home fans more for their money
This week: 13 Last week: 11
Zaza Pachouli came within 14,000 votes of being an All-Star Game starter, and he got more votes than Dirk Nowitzki and DeMarcus Cousins. I'm okay with that â it's just an exhibition, people. Rough loss, blowing a lead and falling to the Rockets on Sunday, they bounce back with three winnable games this week (and facing Golden State).