You know the drill. The Difference is a reflection on the game that was, with one bullet for every point in the final margin.
- Memphis out-rebounded Dallas 22-20 in the first half, a respectable difference, given the talented Memphis front line. However, the second half saw the Mavericks get out-rebounded 28-16. Losing the rebounding battle by 14 makes it exceptionally difficult to win any game, particularly one as adept at grind-it-out basketball as the Grizzlies.
- At the 8:18 mark in the fourth quarter, O.J. Mayo entered the game with it tied 77-77. Over the next two minutes and fifteen seconds, Mayo missed a bad long three point attempt, committed a turnover, fouled a shooter, and committed another turnover, all while the Grizzlies built a six point lead which they would carry with them to the finish line. I’m convinced there’s a good, consistent basketball player inside Mayo, but his tendency to play his worst basketball when Dallas needs him most isn’t going to build a case towards keeping him (if he opts out of his reasonable contract, and he should). He wasn’t the lone reason Dallas lost this game, but posting a state line of two points on 1 of 6 shooting with four turnovers isn’t very helpful.
- Ed Davis, acquired in the mid-season trade of Rudy Gay, ate Dallas alive on the boards. Seven of his game high 11 rebounds came on the offensive end. Memphis has been accused of no longer possession a “go to” scorer, but one thing they do not lack is front line depth. Every single rotation big for Memphis is a better rebounder than any player Dallas has, possibly excluding Brand who has not been himself for weeks.
- The late season rally candidacy of Vince Carter for Sixth Man of the Year continues. Shooting 8 of 11 for 22 points on the tail end of a back to back for a 36 year old basketball player is incredible. He’d probably be starting if Shawn Marion wasn’t a Maverick and I’ve been delighted with his play for almost the entire season.
- Dallas was unable to pull out a win despite Memphis not playing a single starter more than 24 minutes. The Memphis bench contributed 20 more points than Dallas, outscoring the Mavericks 64 to 44 in this department.
- The ball control issues for Dallas caught up to them in the second half. After posting four turnovers in the first half, Dallas coughed it up 11 times in the final 24 minutes of regulation. Mayo and Mike James were the primary culprits, posting three each for just over half of the Maverick total.
Kirk is a member of the Two Man Game family. Follow him on Twitter @KirkSeriousFace for ranting about Dallas basketball, TV, movies, video games, and his dog.