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3 things worth watching as the Mavericks face what used to be the Warriors

Who are these people?

Dallas Mavericks v Golden State Warriors Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images

The Mavericks are feeling good after a win against frequent foe San Antonio and are gearing up to play their third game of a four-game home stand. Luka had his historic 42 point triple double, Dorian Finney-Smith found his shot and rode it to a career high 22. The team is 8-5 and sitting at 5th in the West. Things are going pretty darn good in Dallas.

Meanwhile, things could not possibly be going any worse for the Warriors. The once mighty dynasty is without just about every player that built that dynasty in the first place and come in to the American Airlines Center sporting the NBA’s worst record. Excuse me while I just — oh, hold on... shoot, where is that thing? I think I left my world’s smallest violin in my other City Jersey pocket. Ah well, you get the picture.

Let’s just make this a laugher

Yes, we’re 8-5. Yes Luka’s name is getting brought up in early MVP discussions. YES, we’re on pace for a 50-win season. But, ya’ know what? Some of these wins have just been kind of stressful. Our largest margin of victory was a 20 point victory over the similarly inept Cavaliers, but even that game saw the Mavericks behind as late as3 and a half minutes remaining in the third quarter.

What we haven’t had this year is just an absolute shellacking. I’m talking up by 35 at halftime, foot on the throat, cruising to 20 minutes of Ryan Broekhoff style of victory. The Mavs bring the league’s best rating offense up against a team with the league’s worst defense, playing their third game in a row on the row on the second night of a back to back. If ever there was a time to put the hurt on someone, it’s this game. C’mon. Who needs their heart rate tested on a Wednesday?

Have we found a starting lineup?

The last two games, after an ever-changing starting five, saw Rick lead with Curry, Doncic, Finney-Smith and Porzingis, with the only change between the two games being a swap of Maxi Kleber and Dwight Powell.

They were two games which saw the Mavs get out to impressive starts — topping the Raptors by 10 points in the first and the Spurs by an even more impressive 14. Don’t doubt that we’ve seen the last of Rick’s tinkering, but maybe for the near future, this is the starting five (or four) we can come to count on to continue to build some chemistry.

Calm before the storm

In all seriousness, it’s not wise to just look at a schedule and try to count wins and losses, but this is undoubtedly a soft spot in the Mavs’ schedule. After the Warriors, Dallas finishes its home stand against the Cavs on Friday before facing four teams currently in the top eight of the West. If Dallas is serious about making the playoffs, these are the games you have to win. Good teams beat bad teams. Golden State just went out and beat Memphis, so it’s not like they don’t have professional basketball players (even if you can’t name a single one of them).

It’s hard to be mad with where this team is right now, but when you look back and see things like two losses to the Knicks, those are the kinds of things that haunt you in April. This team needs to go show that it’s settled in to it’s rotations and can go take care of business on a night-to-night basis.

Bonus observation

T-minus 6 days until we see the City Jerseys live with our own eyes.

How to watch

Tip off is at 6:30 p.m. CT on ESPN.