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The Mavericks have been officially eliminated from playoff contention

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It’s been an up and down season for Dallas, but one they can be proud of.

NBA: Memphis Grizzlies at Dallas Mavericks Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

And just like that, the season is all but over. With the Portland Trail Blazers defeating the Phoenix Suns tonight, the Dallas Mavericks have been officially eliminated from playoff contention.

The 2016-17 season has been a crazy ride: from Dirk’s early injuries, to the unexpected rise of Harrison Barnes, to the crazy fun play of Seth Curry. We’ve seen the wackiest rise from 10-day contract player to starter with Yogi Ferrell, the front office robbing the Philadelphia 76ers blind in the Nerlens Noel trade, and a couple vintage Dirk games to boot.

They fought for that 8th seed valiantly for as long as they could, but in the end, there were just too many other talented teams ahead of them.

The Mavericks aren’t used to being out of the big dance. For so much of recent memory, fans have gotten at least four more games — if nothing else, the satisfaction that their team was one of the best. For me, this season may not have been the Mavericks’ best, but it’s been interesting. It’s been both hard to watch the team rebuild, but exciting to watch the collection of talent they’ve assembled. Sure, there were games that have been unwatchable, but there have been just as many that make me hopeful for the future.

And we have seven more games. And at least one more season to watch Dirk be Dirk. And young talent. And a lottery pick.

I’m already excited to see how the future plays out for this team.