Ripple Effect

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on July 31, 2013 under Commentary, Interviews | Be the First to Comment

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Many expected the time during the Las Vegas Summer League to mainly just be centered on the prospects as they were looking to show the Mavs made the right decision in making a commitment to them. It would also be geared towards the ones that were trying to prove they deserve an opportunity to go to training camp.

Instead, the time saw those games being played with major shifts in the main roster being made. Probably the biggest shakeup saw the Mavs bring a new person into their front office mix. The team agreed in principle with Houston Rockets vice president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas to become the franchise’s new general manager.

Rosas, 35, began his nine-year tenure with the Rockets as a video coordinator and scout, and rising to executive vice president of basketball operations. With Rosas as general manager of Houston’s D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, the team won two championships and reached a third league finals.

One thing is certain: if you want to make it through the ranks as a front office type in the NBA, you probably need to start as a video coordinator. Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra’s claim to fame was the fact he started as the video coordinator for the Heat and emerged as now one of the best coach’s in the league.

The move really raised some eyebrows. What did this mean for president Donnie Nelson? He was essentially the de factor general manager since 2005, when his father, Don, left the franchise. Was there going to be a shift in the collective balance of power within the organization? Owner Mark Cuban joined Galloway and Company on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM last week and communicated about the move in more details.

It’s time to decode what he was actually saying.

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Outside the Box: Rocket Launched

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on June 13, 2013 under Commentary | Be the First to Comment

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This week, The Two Man Game will start looking at what the Mavs could do as another pivotal summer is upon them. Mark Cuban has said there are different ways or “permutations” to ensure the Mavs won’t have a failure of a summer if they are unable to land a big fish acquisition.

Dirk Nowitzki said Cuban is “all-in” on this summer, and committed to bringing the franchise back to where it belongs. There are traditional ways to do that but there are also outside the box ways of doing that. We’ll look at five potential angles the Mavs could work that would be considered outside the box.

There is a big fish in Dwight Howard that has mainly been linked to three teams: the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks. While both Dallas and Houston have been linked, Los Angeles is still in the driver’s seat when it comes to landing Howard as they have the extra year and nearly $30 million dollars that they can offer the prized big man.

The one thing that Houston has on their side is a situation that’s suited for Howard to where he can slide right in and join a team that is already built to make a run in the playoffs. He would just be a major enhancement. It would be a situation where he’s going to help build something, not fix it.

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Quoteboard: Dallas Mavericks 112, Houston Rockets 108

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 7, 2013 under Interviews | Be the First to Comment

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The Dallas Mavericks were able to avenge their catastrophic 136-103 loss to the Houston Rockets on Sunday with a 112-108 win at the American Airlines Center on Wednesday night. O.J. Mayo recorded his second double-double of the season (fourth career) with 13 points, six rebounds, a career-high 12 assists and zero turnovers in 33 minutes against Houston on Wednesday. His previous high assist total was 10 (at Golden State Mar. 30, 2009). Seven of Mayo’s 12 assists came in the first half, including five in the first quarter alone. The seven first-half assists were tied for the most assists he’s recorded in any half in his career (7 in first half at Golden State Mar. 30, 2009; 7 in second half vs. Golden State Feb. 9, 2013).

The clean sheet for Mayo in the turnover department marked the sixth game of the year where Mayo did not commit a turnover. The Mavericks are 5-1 in those games. The one loss came in the team’s last game against the Rockets on Sunday.

Shawn Marion went 10-of-16 from the field and recorded a team-high-tying 22 points to go along with three rebounds, four assists and two steals in 36 minutes against Houston. With the win, the Mavericks improved to 4-1 this season when Marion scores 20-plus points.

Dirk Nowitzki tallied 22 points, five rebounds and three assists in 33 minutes against Houston. He scored 20-plus points for the fifth time in his last seven games.

The Mavericks made a change to their starting lineup. They started Mike James in place of Darren Collison and Brandan Wright in place of Chris Kaman. It marked the team’s 19th different starting lineup of the year.

Some notes before the quotes:

- Mike James made his first start of the season (264th career) against Houston on Wednesday. It was his first start since Mar. 25, 2009 vs. Charlotte (with Washington). The Mavericks used their 19th different starting lineup of the year.

- Shawn Marion passed Rod Strickland (1,616) for 25th place on the NBA’s all-time steals list with a theft (his 1,617th career) at the 6:37 mark of the third quarter. Marion finished with two steals against Houston and now has 1,618 for his career. Eddie Jones ranks 24th all-time with 1,620 career steals.

- With a block at the 1:16 mark of the first quarter, Elton Brand passed Rockets head coach Kevin McHale (1,690) for 24th place on the NBA’s all-time blocks list. It was the 1,691st block of Brand’s career. Moses Malone ranks 23rd all-time with 1,733 career rejections.

Here is the quoteboard for the Mavericks’ win against the Rockets.

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Setting the Table: Houston Rockets (Game 60)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 6, 2013 under Interviews | Be the First to Comment

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The home-and-home series between the Dallas Mavericks (26-33) and the Houston Rockets (33-28) concludes with the showdown at the American Airlines Center. Houston has lost five consecutive trips to Dallas since an overtime win Dec. 18, 2009, a game Dirk Nowitzki left in the second quarter with an injury after scoring five points. Remember Carl Landry? A collision after a Dirk jumper let to Dirk having a gashed elbow and Landry with five cracked or knocked-out teeth. The Mavericks found pieces of two teeth imbedded in Nowitzki’s elbow and had to spend 30 minutes cleaning the cut.

Anyways, back to the point – Houston has lost five consecutive games in Dallas since 2009. That’s part of a key trend in this series since the start of 2005-06: Dallas is 22-2 when Nowitzki scores at least 15 points and 1-5 when he doesn’t, including two games he missed. Dallas simply has to run their offense through Dirk and force the action on the Rockets. With Houston taking the first game on Sunday in clobbering fashion, another loss by the Mavericks would destroy whatever hopes the team has left of making the playoffs.

Here are the notes for the game between the Mavericks and the Rockets.

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The Rundown, Volume XVI

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 4, 2013 under Commentary, Recaps | 5 Comments to Read

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The Rundown is back. Every Monday (unless there’s a better feature to run with), The Rundown will chronicle the week that was for the Mavs, as well as let you know what is coming up for the boys in blue, with a unique spin. Simply put, it is your Monday catch-up on all things with the Dallas Mavericks.

To say the least, the playoff hopes are officially teetering on the ledge. The week saw a classic showdown between two future Hall of Famers, a colossal meltdown that left one team singing the blues, a loss that might be the nail in the coffin and the true return of the Tall Baller From the G. There was all of that, and a former Mav popped his head back into the news. Let’s take a look at the week for that was for Dallas.

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Setting the Table: Houston Rockets (Game 59)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 3, 2013 under Previews | Be the First to Comment

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This is it. This is what it comes down to for the boys in blue. The fate of the Dallas Mavericks’ (26-32) season hangs in the balance as they start a home-and-home series with the Houston Rockets (32-28). With Dallas five games back, four in the loss column, to Houston in the race for the eighth and final seed in the Western Conference, these two games are essentially must-win games for the Mavericks.

The season rests on these next two games, and the Mavericks might as well ride the man who can deliver in their time of need – Dirk Nowitzki. The former league MVP is averaging 21.2 points – 5.1 more than his season mark – on 53.2 percent shooting over the last five contests. In the six games after the All-Star break, Dirk is averaging a double-double clip of 19.7 points and 10.2 rebounds. He likes seeing his in-state rivals in red. Over his career (a total of 53 regular season matchups), Dirk is averaging 22.5 points, 7.6 rebounds on 48.3 percent shooting from the field and 42.5 percent from 3-point range against the Rockets. Dallas is 35-7 all-time versus Houston when Nowitzki scores at least 16 points. The Mavericks might as well ride through Highway 41 if they want any chance of making it to the playoffs.

Here are the notes for the game between the Mavericks and the Rockets.

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Quoteboard: Dallas Mavericks 105, Houston Rockets 100

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on January 17, 2013 under Interviews | Be the First to Comment

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It’s not in the quad, but the Mavericks have gone streaking. Dallas used a 19-0 run in the first quarter en route to their 105-100 victory over the Houston Rockets. With the victory, the Mavericks recorded their ninth consecutive win against the Rockets. It’s Dallas’ longest active winning streak against any team. The Rockets have not defeated the Mavericks in the regular season since Dec. 31, 2009, defeated Dallas 97-94. The Mavericks scored 100-plus points for the fourth straight game. Dallas is averaging 109.8 points per game over its last four games.

According to Mavericks statistician Dave Keeney, the Mavericks won for only the fifth time since 1986 when shooting under 39 percent from the field but scoring at least 100 points. They had at least 33 free throws made in all five games. Dallas shot 38.4 percent from the field in the win. The 33 free throws made marked a new season-high for the Mavericks, previous high was 30 at Sacramento on Jan. 10.

Elton Brand recorded his fourth double-double of the season (400th career) with 11 points, a team-high 10 rebounds and a team-high two blocks in 27 minutes vs. Houston. He scored in double figures for the fifth time in his last seven games. Shawn Marion tallied 18 points to go along with nine rebounds and three assists in 33 minutes. He scored 18-plus points for the third time in his last four games.

O.J. Mayo recorded seven points, four rebounds, five assists and one steal in the first quarter. Mayo finished with 18 points, six rebounds, a game-high eight assists, two steals and a block in 33 minutes. He went 12-of-13 from the line, setting new career highs for free throws made and attempted. He recorded eight-plus assists for the second consecutive game, season-high 9 vs. Minnesota 1/14. Vintage Dirk Nowitzki also arrived as he scored 10 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter.

Here is the quoteboard for victory over the Rockets.

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Setting the Table: Houston Rockets (Game 20)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on December 8, 2012 under Previews | Be the First to Comment

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The Dallas Mavericks (9-10) have a chance to do something they’ve haven’t done in a while if they can secure a victory over the Houston Rockets (9-9) on Saturday night. Dallas is looking for their first set of back-to-back wins since 11/3-11/7 when they won three in a row. It’s been a while. They will take on a Rockets squad that lost in San Antonio 114-92 on Friday night. It will be a challenge for Dallas as Houston owns an active six-game home winning streak (11/14/12-12/4/12). Over the run, the Rockets have scored 112.0 points/game, while shooting 47.5 percent from the field and 40.0 percent from beyond the arc.

In an update from injuries suffered in the game against Phoenix, Shawn Marion is doubtful for the game against the Rockets, and Chris Kaman might be able to play, Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle told reporters after the morning shootaround in Houston. The Mavericks have a chance for consecutive wins, getting back to .500 and putting an end to the Rockets’ home win-streak. It should be a fun one in Houston.

Here are notes for the game between the Mavericks and the Rockets.

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Setting the Table: Houston Rockets (Preseason)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on October 15, 2012 under Previews | Be the First to Comment

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Throw the records and averages out for the first two games the Mavericks had in Europe. It really gets started tonight as the Mavericks host the Houston Rockets. The last time the Mavericks were on the floor was on March 5th as they were swept out of the first round of the playoffs by the Oklahoma City Thunder. Since then, the Mavericks have seen a dramatic overhaul to their roster. Fans attending or watching the game will get their first real glimpse at the new-look Mavs against real NBA competition.

Here are some things of note to set the table for the game against the Rockets.

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