- Tim MacMahon, ESPN Staff Writer
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Whatever the Mavs are doing at halftime isn’t working.
They’ve been absolutely awful in third quarters during this three-game losing streak.
“We talked about having bad efforts coming out of halftime,” Dirk Nowitzki said after Saturday’s loss to the Cavaliers, “and this was another perfect example of it.”
How bad has it been? The Mavs have had more turnovers than field goals in the third quarter of each loss during the skid.
They were 3-of-19 from the floor with four turnovers in the third Wednesday night against the Thunder, when the Mavs were outscored 22-14.
They were 5-of-17 from the floor with six turnovers in the third Friday against the Pacers, when the Mavs were outscored 24-16.
They were 6-of-19 from the floor with seven turnovers in the third Saturday against the Cavs, when the Mavs were outscored 27-13.
Add it all up, and the Mavs have 14 buckets and 17 turnovers in the last three third quarters. They’ve shot .255 from the floor in those frames. And they’ve been outscored by 30 points.
1. Wright stuff: Backup big man Ian Mahinmi didn’t play in a game for the first time this season, watching from the bench while coach Rick Carlisle opted to give Brandan Wright extended minutes. Wright took advantage of the opportunity, scoring 11 points on 5-of-9 shooting, grabbing eight rebounds and blocking four shots in 29 minutes. “Wright has produced virtually every time we put him in a game,” Carlisle said. “He’s doing a terrific job.” Mahinmi, who was coming off a two-point, two-rebound performance against the Pacers, has tailed off recently.
2. Roddy B. benched: Rodrigue Beaubois came off the bench for the first time since Jason Kidd suffered a strained right calf. Delonte West started at point guard, losing for the first time in that role as a Maverick. Beaubois impressed during his first three games as the primary point guard, but he’s been in a nasty shooting funk since then and has looked timid the last two nights. He’s 5-of-23 from the floor in the last two games and attempted only two shots in his scoreless outing against the Cavs.
3. Dirk keeps climbing: Nowitzki’s 24 points give him 23,154 for his career, pushing him past Lakers great Elgin Baylor for 22nd in NBA history. Next up: Adrian Dantley with 23,177 points. Nowitzki is also likely to pass Robert Parish (23,334) and Charles Barkley (23,757) this season. Boston’s Kevin Garnett is between Parish and Barkley but has a 459-point cushion on Nowitzki.