Heard It Through the Grapevine 3-4-09

Posted by Rob Mahoney on March 4, 2009 under xOther | Be the First to Comment

  • Henry Abbott of TrueHoop is killing it today with a five-part series on the traveling rule in the NBA.  Still need a hook?  Try this on for size: “In the conversation that follows, [Vice President of Referee Operations Joe] Borgia unravels one of the NBA’s great secrets. ‘We really don’t reference the rulebook.’”
  • Did you know that Jason Kidd has recorded 10+ assists in 492 games (45.3% of his total games)?  That Kidd would need to play around 630 more games to pass John Stockton as the All-Time assists leader?  That Kidd is responsible for approximately 21,521 points through assists alone?  More fun with numbers with Joe Schuhmann at NBA.com.
  • A look at the “Los Mavs” jerseys the guys will wear tonight, for the league’s Noche Latina “celebration.”
  • Jean-Jacques Taylor of the Dallas Morning News has made it his personal mission to make Maverick fans cry: “The Mavs already have lost six games by at least 20 points, and there’s still more than a month left in the season. No good team does that. Just so you know, the Mavs lost only seven games by at least 20 points in the last three seasons combined. Last season, it happened just once.”
  • The big story of late is Mark Cuban’s rather rigid stance towards the Mavs’ lack of effort.  From Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News: “‘The effort and energy, on both sides of the ball, by each player will decide their future with the Mavericks. If each player can’t take the personal initiative to make every game important and play like it, I don’t see them being here next season.’ Cuban, who pours his heart as well as his money into the franchise, wasn’t finished. ‘The ball won’t always bounce the way we want it to, but every player can control their level of effort,’ he said. ‘If it’s not important enough to them to lay it out every game the rest of the season, they won’t be back. I don’t care what their contract is. I would rather turn over the roster 100 percent than subject fans to another game like last night.’”  Not even Dirk and JET are absolved from the criticism this time around; each played a big part in the Mavs’ no-show in OKC.  Let’s hope for an energized team tonight.  Also: this apparently is not breaking news to the players themselves.
  • Luther Head has apparently chosen to go to the Miami Heat.  Short-lived rumors, FTW!  Also — Drew Gooden is heading to San Antonio as predicted, and Joe Smith is unsurprisingly Cleveland-bound.
  • One of the most important things to consider when re-evaluating the Kidd-Harris deal is that the point is not that Kidd has been bad.  He’s contributed in a lot of ways and some nights he’s been spectacular.  The problem is that he pales in comparison to his competition, and that the Mavs just haven’t been good.  From Jeff Caplan of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Yet, in a Western Conference teeming with dynamic point guards who score and dish, solid hasn’t cut it. Kidd’s disappointing head-to-head matchups against five elite counterparts who lead playoff contenders — and the Mavs’ 3-9 record this season against those teams — provide eye-opening perspective…Kidd is not winning many one-on-one clashes when going up against Parker, Utah’s Deron Williams, New Orleans’ Chris Paul, Denver’s Chauncey Billups and Phoenix’s Steve Nash. In those 12 matchups, Kidd has averaged 9.5 points on 37.1 percent shooting. His counterparts have averaged 23.7 points and 46.2 percent shooting. Kidd has outscored them twice…Since Kidd’s arrival, the Mavs are .500 (29-29) against the West and — stop rubbing your eyes — 9-23 against this season’s other eight playoff contenders…Maybe Kidd’s talents to distribute, with little pressure to score, might be a championship fit with a more athletic cast such as Portland or Denver. Or with Orlando, a team equally as dangerous inside and outside…While injuries, negligible interior scoring and a fluctuating bench are all culprits in the Mavs’ poor record against chief rivals, it seems apparent that a playoff push will require their $21.4 million quarterback to more closely match his counterparts point-for-point.