The Dallas Mavericks began their season with an absolute blowout. Unfortunately, they were the team getting blown out, as the Atlanta Hawks obliterated them 113-87. No one was particularly good for the Mavericks, and most of the Hawks were. It is never wise to overreact to one game, but there are still stats to watch.
16: Number of Maverick assists
During the preseason, the Mavericks averaged 30 assists per game as a team. One of new head coach Jason Kidd’s priorities was empowering multiple players outside of Luka Doncic to make plays. The Mavericks still attempted to allow other players to make plays, they simply failed to do so. When they did make plays, shooters missed shots.
4: Number of turnovers for Kristaps Porzingis
This is actually a positive. Porzingis had one of the lowest turnover rate seasons in history relative to his production last season. In the playoffs that fell even more. Why is it a positive for him to turn the ball over more? It means that he was trying to do things, which means he both felt better and was more involved. When players try to do things, sometimes those things don’t go well. Porzingis’ turnover rate completely plummeted in the playoffs because he was just standing in the corner. He did not do that tonight.
One of the few positives of this game was that Porzingis continued to show the increased mobility that he showed during the preseason. If he moves that well and is as active defensively as he was tonight, the positive results will come.
15: Number of turnovers for the Mavericks as a team
This is not a positive. In addition to Porzingis’ four, Luka had five, and six other players had one a piece. The team cannot turn the ball over this frequently, especially if they are going to have as few assists as they did. This means both better passes and a better job of catching those passes.
43: Number of threes the Mavericks took
Many of the threes were the type of bail out threes the Mavericks looked to remove, but the team took plenty of threes. Despite the poor shooting and quality of the looks, over time shooters this good will shoot better. The Mavericks taking this many threes is a good thing.
The Hawks are a really bad matchup for the Mavericks in many of the ways that the Clippers were last year. They have so many long, athletic players that can put the Mavericks in very tough positions. Not many teams boast that collection of length and athleticism, so it is too early to give up on the team.
Here’s our lastest episode of Mavs Moneyball After Dark. If you’re unable to see the embed below, click here to be taken to the podcast directly. Or go to your favorite podcast app and search Mavs Moneyball Podcast.