Well that went about as expected. I’m not going to waste anyone’s time breaking down the Xs and Os of why a vastly superior team dominated a vastly inferior team. But, here are a few fun things I noticed tonight.
The Wesley Matthews third quarter
Despite an ever-growing Warriors lead, Wes was everywhere in the third. Dude killed it. He hit a couple of threes, including a beautiful stepback t the top of the key to finish the quarter. He did that Dirk thing near the basket, where he just sort of pivoted around for 5 seconds until Steph moved a little to much and gave him room to toss in the layup. He missed that layup, but jumped up, caught the rebound, and put back his own miss while still in the air. It was pretty.
He was also doing work on the other end, nabbing steals, playing passing lanes, and making life maybe just a little more difficult on the blazing hot Splash Brothers. As has become the usual for Dallas this season, Wes finished as the Mavs’ second-highest scorer and biggest minutes-getter. I love Wes Matthews, and you should too.
Everyone loves Harrison Barnes
I saw a lotta love for Harrison “Honey Butter” Barnes in my twitter timeline tonight. And that seems totally justified. Honey Butter Barnes is a cool dude who scores the basketball in many beautiful ways. Sometimes he does things like this:
Harrison Barnes making KD look all kinds of foolish pic.twitter.com/z7EjJO0DXn— BBALLBREAKDOWN (@bballbreakdown) December 31, 2016
Carlisle wisely let the youths finish out the game in the 4th, so Barnes only played 25 minutes in 3 quarters. In that time, he scored 25 points, shot 43% from 3, and rounded out his stat sheet with 3 rebounds, an assist, 2 steals, and a block. I’d love for that rebounding number to be higher for the team’s starting power forward, and 0 free throws attempted remains a bad thing for a team’s star. These are quibbles though. Everyone carry on with your HB love.
Dwight “Double Double” Powell
Dwight Powell did not score a point until 11:22pm central time. He then went on to score 10 points in 22 minutes, along with 14 rebounds, an assist, and two blocks. I think this was his first double double of the season. He’s still got a long way to go to be a rotation player on a good team, but I like what I’ve seen from him lately.
Consider me back on the Powell bandwagon.
The new guy can play?
Tell me if this surprises you: the Mavs picked up another sub-6-foot guard. Nobody? Okay good. Now here’s the real surprise: Pierre Jackson looked pretty good tonight against Golden State, and they kept some of their rotation players in even after the Mavs went to the back of the bench. Jackson played most of the 4th quarter and finished with 3 points and 4 assists. He moved well with the ball and had some nice lobs to Powell.
And while I’m on the topic of young guys, Justin Anderson had an interesting 4th quarter. He had 6 points, 4 rebounds, an assist, 2 steals, and a ridiculous chasedown block right towards the end of the game. He also went 0-5 from beyond the arc. I don’t get him, but I just hope he keeps progressing.
To sum up, Dallas lost on the road against a literal Death Star (of basketball) in their 4th game in 5 nights. By only 9 points. Cool stuff.