The Dallas Mavericks defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder 103-84. Luka Doncic missed the game, and is slated to miss more with lingering ankle issues as the Mavericks appear committed to getting the superstar fully healthy.
Dallas slowly but surely pulled ahead of an over-matched Thunder squad, particularly in terms of sheer size. Back up big man Moses Brown in particular caused some problems for Oklahoma City.
After leading by 10 at the half, the Mavericks held firm through much of the second half despite another bad shooting night. Lucky for them, the Thunder managed to shoot even worse from the floor. Despite subpar nights from most of the regular rotation, solid performances from both Brown and second year forward Josh Green allowed Dallas to cruise to a 103-84 victory. Dallas is now 13-13 on the year and play tomorrow night against the Charlotte Hornets.
Here are some thoughts.
A win is a win
This game was not pretty by any stretch of the imagination. The Mavericks are not in a position to worry about style points, especially missing their superstar. They desperately needed to take of business tonight and they did.
This was not the get right game the Mavericks needed.
All of that being said… this game was ugly. Kristaps Porzingis was not able to find a groove with the extra touches provided by Luka’s absence. The starting lineup combined to make four threes and Jalen Brunson only made one of them. Brunson also has a history of shining with the extra touches that come from missing Luka. Unfortunately while he played a solid game, Brunson has been unable to regain his early season form. The team needs another game where they just dominate someone like the Pelicans game.
Stretching Dorian Finney-Smith may be unwise but he is doing the best he can to make it pay off.
Scottie Pippen famously did whatever his team needed to fill the gaps on any given night. Finney-Smith is not Pippen but he does his absolute best to fill in where he can. Finney-Smith had 5 assists, 6 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 blocks and 2 made threes. He did a little bit of everything as he absolutely was integral to the win. He is a constant target of complaints from many fans of the team but it is not his fault he is asked to do too much. He continues to work incredibly hard to do everything the team asks of him.
Overall, it wasn’t pretty but they got the win. That’s the most important thing and hopefully they can do so again tomorrow.
Here’s our latest 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.