The Dallas Mavericks lost 127-123 to Real Madrid. The game was a homecoming for Luka Doncic, who played for Real Madrid as a teenager before joining the NBA. Unfortunately, Doncic was limited to just five minutes due to a left calf strain. Kyrie Irving was also out, and the Mavericks could not overcome those absences in what ended up being a high-scoring loss. Here are the stats to know.
127: Points scored by Real Madrid
Missing Irving and Doncic certainly explains the Mavericks being worse and potentially even losing to most teams. One would hope the Mavericks would be able to overcome those obstacles against a team that literally isn’t even in the NBA. However, what is most concerning is the lack of defense. Doncic and Irving won’t be counted on to fix the defense.
In fact, missing Doncic and Irving who both have tendencies to take plays off defensively should have improved the defense. The Mavericks simply have to find ways to get more stops, and this was not a step in the right direction.
14: Rebound advantage for Real Madrid
The Mavericks also allowed Real Madrid to collect 67 rebounds to the Mavericks’ 53. Rebounding has become a devalued skill in the age of analytics. Winning the rebounding battle is a way for the team to gain more possessions. The Mavericks spent the entire offseason working on getting bigger and more athletic. The fact that they were dominated on the boards by Real Madrid is concerning.
20 of 51: Real Madrid’s shooting from three
The Mavericks biggest defensive strength of the Jason Kidd era has been limiting the number of three-point attempts for the opponents. The Mavericks have also generally done a decent job of contesting those attempts which leads to a lower percentage from the opponent. Today, the Mavericks did neither. Real Madrid shot with reckless abandon and shot well, connecting on 39.2 percent of their threes.
Overall, it is just the preseason. There is no need to get too worked up about anything that occurred in the preseason because it doesn’t count. However, there also hasn’t been anything to get excited about.