Outside the Box: Setting the Pace

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on June 10, 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.

The Indiana Pacers continued their development with their new core this season as they took the Miami Heat to seven games in the Eastern Conference Finals. They were able to do that without the services of Danny Granger. Granger missed the first half of this season with patellar tendinosis after undergoing a second injection to treat the injury back in October. He played for a brief stint of only five games back in February, only to see the injury flare up again. He ended up having surgery on the knee and was out for the remainder of the season.

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Supply and Demand

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

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It’s never too early to discuss free agency. Well, yeah, it is too early, but the Mavs actually don’t have anything on the agenda in terms of participation in games that actually count. With that in mind, we’ve gotten our first bit of information in terms of free agent news. It’s not really a shocker.

ESPN 1500 in Minnesota reported late last week that it has “heard from multiple angles” that the Minnesota Timberwolves might target free-agent guard O.J. Mayo. When talking about Minnesota it’s important to remember that they’re under new management now. President of Basketball Operations Flip Saunders took over as David Kahn was fired.

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Quoteboard: Indiana Pacers 103, Dallas Mavericks 78

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 29, 2013 under Interviews | Be the First to Comment

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The Indiana Pacers were well aware of the fact that the Dallas Mavericks were one game away from shaving their beards. Indiana manhandled Dallas en route to a 103-78 victory. This was the worst loss for the Mavericks since their first matchup against the Houston Rockets to start the month (suffered a 136-103 loss on Mar. 3). Pacers forward Paul George tallied a game-high 24 points to go along with eight rebounds, a team-high six assists and three steals in 38 minutes.

Dirk Nowitzki totaled a team-high 21 points and seven boards in 33 minutes against Indiana on Thursday. He scored 20-plus points for the sixth time in his last nine games (15th time this season). Nowitzki is averaging 20.7 points on 54. 1 percent shooting (.419 3FG) over his last 10 games. Dirk is averaging 19.1 points and 8.3 rebounds since the All-Star break. He is shooting 51.6 percent from the field and 44.4 percent (24-of-54) from beyond the arc since the break.

Fortunately for the Mavericks, the Los Angeles Lakers lost to the Milwaukee Bucks. That means Dallas didn’t lose any actual ground to Los Angeles in the standings. By being two games under .500 now, the earliest they can shave is now Apr. 2, They would be able to do so by beating the Chicago Bulls and…the Los Angeles Lakers.

Some notes before the quotes:

- With the total being 55-34, Indiana clobbered Dallas on the glass. Nov. 24 against the Lakers still remains the largest rebounding deficit the Mavericks had this year (-22).

- After the game was tied at 41 at halftime, Indiana outscored Dallas 34-17 in the third quarter. Dallas shot 7-of-20 (35.0 percent) from the field in the third quarter. Indiana shot 14-of-20 (70.0 percent) from the field.

- Dallas shot 38.6 percent from the field in the loss. Dallas had shot above 40 percent in 31 straight coming into the game. That was their longest streak since 41 in 1987, and the franchise record is 72 from Jan. 1986 through Dec. 1986. Minus Dirk’s 10-of-20 shooting line, the Mavericks shot 22-of-63 (34.9 percent) from the field.

- Dallas is now 5-26 on the year when they score less than 100 points, 3-26 when they shoot below 45 percent from the field.

- The 78 points scored by the Mavericks ties their second-lowest scoring output for the season. The 74 they scored against the Toronto Raptors on Dec. 14 marks their lowest total for the year.

Here is the quoteboard for Dallas’ dud against Indiana.

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Setting the Table: Indiana Pacers (Game 72)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on March 28, 2013 under Previews | Be the First to Comment

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The Dallas Mavericks (35-36) will continue their homestand with a matchup against the Indiana Pacers (45-27). It has come to this. After a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Jan. 9, the Mavericks were 10 games below .500, 13-23. The Mavericks made a pact in February to say that they will grow beards until they get back to .500. Omar the Barber will be in the building as they are one win away from making it all of the way back to level footing.

They have gone 22-13 since they were 10 games under .500 after a loss to the Clippers on Jan. 9 (seventh best in NBA, fifth best in West). Dallas is trying to become only third team since 1989 (Both the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers in 1997) to make playoffs after being 10 games or more under .500.

The Pacers do come in on the second night of a back-to-back after a solid 100-91 win on the road against the Houston Rockets, but Indiana does present a very stout challenge for Dallas. There’s still no margin for error for the Mavericks as both the Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz won last night. That means Dallas moved back to the 10th spot in the West, one-and-a-half games back of the Lakers for 8th and a half-game back of the Jazz for the 9th spot (Jazz still holds the tiebreaker).

In breaking news, the Pacers announced that forward Danny Granger will miss the remainder of the season to undergo surgery on his left knee.

Via the team’s statement:

“The decision was made after all conservative treatment options could not alleviate the soreness Granger encountered. After consultation between Granger, the Pacers’ medical staff and Dr. James Andrews, surgery became the preferred option.

Granger underwent a procedure in late October for patellar tendinosis. He returned Feb. 25 and played five games before continued soreness in the knee sidelined him. After further rehab did not ease the soreness, surgery was decided on. He is expected to be ready for training camp.”

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

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Setting the Table: Indiana Pacers (Game 10)

Posted by Bryan Gutierrez on November 16, 2012 under Previews | Read the First Comment

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For the Dallas Mavericks (5-4), it’s another weekend, another back-to-back against Eastern Conference opponents. They will start it off by facing the Indiana Pacers (3-6). The Mavericks are 1-1 in the first half of a back-to-back and 0-2 in the second half of a back-to-back this season. The Mavericks have 16 back-to-backs in 2012-13, with only one stretch of four games in five nights. In total, 10 back-to-backs are on the road, three begin at home and conclude on the road and three are road-to-home. Dallas played 22 back-to-backs in 2011-12, going 7-15 in the first half and 13-9 in the second half of those back-to-backs.

There will be reunions as Darren Collison, Dahntay Jones and Ian Mahinmi get to see their former teams for the first time this season. More importantly, it appears Shawn Marion (sprained MCL) is going to give it a go and play against the Pacers. He has missed the last five games due to the injury.

Here are some notes to get you ready for the game between the Mavericks and the Pacers.

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