Losing tonight would be a problem since going 3-7 over your first 10 games is never good. That goes without saying. But while a loss, at home, against a Dirk-less,
Matrix-less Mavs team, would be disappointing, the real thing I will be looking to see tonight is just a team that isn’t bad. If they play a decent offense game, show up from an execution/effort standpoint and don’t let Dallas shoot some ungodly percentage from the floor, that will be enough. Teams lose. This team really, really needs a win to repair its own confidence, but more than anything, those watching need to see that they aren’t horrible. Evidence to the contrary has been sparse so far this season.
A group of people hoping for more than that, however, likely sits in Indiana’s front-office chairs. It was Donnie Walsh and Kevin Pritchard who are responsible for Dallas having the starting point guard they do. And it was their fault that Dahntay Jones isn’t starting in place of Danny Granger right now. I have no doubt that he, even with his limited NBA skill set, would have out-played Sam Young in this early season. Lance Stephenson has been playing well, but the team really could have used his ability to handle the ball, create and score off the bench while Dahntay brought some experience, professionalism and understanding of the offense to the starting unit.
If Dallas beats Indiana, with a team that consists of the front office gifting Mark Cuban two rotation players … man. That’s a bad look.
The ball goes up at 7:00 in The Fieldhouse.
|George Hill||Darren Collison|
|Lance Stephenson||OJ Mayo|
|Paul George||Shawn Marion|
|David West||Elton Brand|
|Roy Hibbert||Chris Kaman|
This post has been updated to reflect that Marion started.
Tags: Game Preview