Can Brandan Wright bring an energy boost?

May, 3, 2012

DALLAS -- The Mavericks three-headed monster at center, which seems a far-fetched term in relation to production, needs a jolt.

Senior NBA writer Marc Stein shares his thoughts on Game 3 between the Mavs and Thunder. Who needs to step up for the Mavs to win other than Dirk or Jet?

Listen Listen
The combination of starting center Brendan Haywood, Ian Mahinmi and Brandan Wright have combined in the first two games to average 11.0 points on 42.2 percent shooting, and 9.5 rebounds. All by himself, Oklahoma City Thunder center Kendrick Perkins has put up 6.5 points on 50 percent shooting, 7.0 rebounds and some extracurricular muscle along the way.

Backup center Ian Mahinmi has led the Mavs at 20 minutes a game, averaging 7.5 points and 4.5 rebounds. Haywood has averaged just 14.5 minutes, 3.0 points and 2.5 rebounds. Wright has shown his postseason greenness in just 6.5 minutes.

"Our centers combined were very productive during the regular season and it was a real positive factor for us," coach Rick Carlisle said. "They've done good things in these first two games, but we want those guys to be active. We need them to generate extra possessions for us when they can and we need them to have a physical presence. They're very clear on what we're asking of them."

The veteran Haywood must become more of a presence, but perhaps the most disappointing aspect is that the 6-foot-10 Wright has shrunk under the bright lights of the playoffs. In 12 total minutes played he has two turnovers, which is one more than his scoring total (he came nowhere close to scoring on his two shot attempts) and one fewer than his total rebounds.

During the season, Wright provided great energy boosts with his activity, yet in this series he hasn't come close to completing one of his patented two-handed jams. Wright didn't want to see a series against the Lakers because his playing time would be close to eliminated against Andrew Bynum. Wright figured to have an opportunity to shine against the Thunder's bigs.

It just hasn't been the case yet.

"It's two games and it's two road games and it's his first two playoff games," Carlisle said. "We're home tonight and we've got to turn some things around on a lot of different levels and he's going to have to be ready tonight."



You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?


Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Rick Carlisle

Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett at Mavericks media day to discuss his expectations for the upcoming season.

Galloway & Company: Mark Cuban

Mark Cuban joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Mavericks' new GM Gersson Rosas and much more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Mark Cuban talk

Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss Mark Cuban's comments from Las Vegas about the Mavericks' offseason, how he sees the team without Dwight Howard and more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Marc Stein

Marc Stein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why the Mavericks didn't want to match Cleveland's offer to Andrew Bynum, what's next for the Mavs and the possibility of Dirk Nowitzki ending his career elsewhere.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: The Standoff

Jeff Platt fires quick-hitters at Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon in the weekly sports standoff about Andrew Bynum, the Mavs' current backcourt, a potential Nelson Cruz suspension and more.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Ramona Shelburne

ESPN Los Angeles' Ramona Shelburne joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why she thinks Andrew Bynum got a bad rap in Los Angeles and how he would fit in with the Mavericks.

Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Buy or sell

Buy, sell or hold? If Dwight Howard goes to another team, what are the Mavs' options? The guys take a look at a list of potential fallback options.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Marc Stein

ESPN's Marc Stein joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the latest news on the Mavericks' meeting with Dwight Howard.


Dirk Nowitzki
21.7 2.7 0.9 32.9
ReboundsS. Dalembert 6.8
AssistsM. Ellis 5.7
StealsM. Ellis 1.7
BlocksS. Dalembert 1.2