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3 things we learned as the shorthanded Mavericks fell to the Warriors, 95-116

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Dallas drops to 2-6 on a schedule loss to Golden State.

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Golden State Warriors Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

After witnessing Donald Trump pull an upset over Hillary Clinton, the Dallas Mavericks took their own shot at duplicating the improbable.

Instead, they did their best Gary Johnson impression.

For the first six minutes, it looked like Dallas was bringing out Golden State’s flaws. A few turnovers, some bad fouls, if Dallas could keep this up, this might actually be a game! Wrong (Donald Trump voice). Klay Thompson three. Klay Thompson three. Klay Thompson three. Klay Thompson three. He was unstoppable, finishing the quarter with 18 points. Meanwhile, the Mavericks finished the quarter with 15.

Dallas wasn’t generating much offensively. It was clear Dallas was trying to slow the pace down, but man… they slowed it down. The hardwood was pounded by Seth Curry over-dribbling, and dishing the ball to someone with six seconds on the clock, with the only option being to drive in against Draymond Green. The only alternative was Dallas putting up a three; which Golden State was daring them to do. Dallas finished the game by going 6-for-28 from three. The three-point struggles were consistent all game. Very little going on inside, very little going outside.

The Mavs B team can’t compete with the Warriors’ A team

I’d like to say the Mavericks had a shooters chance against this team, but the reality is, they didn’t have a chance the second they stepped foot on the floor, mostly due to Dallas resting many of their key players. The Warriors straight up outplayed Dallas in every facet of the game. Let’s compare these two starting lineups:

Seth Curry vs Steph Curry
Justin Anderson vs Klay Thompson
Dorian Finney-Smith vs Kevin Durant
Harrison Barnes vs Draymond Green
Dwight Powell vs Zaza Pachulia

So the cards are stacked against Dallas. Most of their regular starters were inactive tonight, so… whaddayagonnado? I’d like to say the game would have been much different had Dirk Nowitzki, Wesley Matthews, Deron Williams, and J.J. Barea played, but realistically, Golden State is just too good for Dallas to beat this caliber team.

Seth Curry continues to impress, especially on defense

Seth held his own on defense. He had the daunting task of guarding his brother. His one-on-one defense wasn’t what was impressive, it was the way he handled switches, and how he helped his teammates on the floor by generating turnovers. Let me paint a picture for you:

Steph dribbles up, guarded by Seth. Dribble. Dribble. Dribble. Here comes Draymond Green to set a screen. Mavericks play it right and deny the three. Switch on defense occurs and now we have a miss-match on defense. Pass to Draymond.

Pause.

Here is where we normally see J.J. body slam the floor and draw the foul. That ain’t how Seth Curry does things. Curry went toe-to-toe with these guys, swiping and absorbing contact, occasionally causing his matchup to pass the ball out. This was the most impressive thing he did all night.

Coupling his toughness on defense with the steals he racked up during the game makes me even more excited for this guy. With the way Golden State passes the ball, they’re bound to turn it over occasionally, but Seth Curry wasn’t afraid to put himself out of position if it meant potentially stealing the ball. He finished with five steals.

The young guys had great energy

So we spoke about the lineup Dallas threw at Golden State. Despite the drastic difference in skill, Dallas didn’t just roll over and take the loss. The first half was discouraging, but Golden State was still deploying their stars in the fourth quarter.

Harrison Barnes continued to do what he’s been doing this season, finishing with 25 points and eight rebounds. Barnes was often seen drawing double teams, and did an excellent job of passing out of them. Unfortunately, his teammates couldn’t take advantage of the split-second of being open, which was a huge reason why Barnes only finished with one assist.

Justin Anderson fired the team up with two back-to-back put-back dunks.

Although they were only worth two points, the message it sends to the team is much louder than that. Seth Curry’s steals, leading to fast break points ruffled feathers. Although the game was over at tipoff, it’s encouraging to see the Dallas players try to prove something to their coach and earn playing time. Even though this game was a wash, the players didn’t treat it as such.

Additional Notes:

  • This is Harrison Barnes' third game in a row with over 25-points. He'd never had a back-to-back game with such stats until last night. Tonight marks his third game in a row.
  • This was also Barnes’ and Bogut’s first game back against Golden State after being moved in the offseason. Golden State honored the two players by showing this tribute video before the game: