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Thursday, March 25, 2010
Cuban: Road success more relevant than other stats

By Tim MacMahon

PORTLAND -- John Hollinger's ESPN.com Power Rankings, a formula that currently considers the Mavs the 14th-best team in the NBA, ruffles the feathers of a lot of folks in Dallas.

Mark Cuban isn't one of them.

Cuban, who has been at the forefront of the NBA's advanced statistical movement, believes that a flaw with Hollinger's formula is that it places equal emphasis on home and road point differential. Cuban said his studies indicate that road point differential is more important.

Coincidentally (or not), the Mavs have the second-best road point differential in the league this season, according to Cuban.

The Mavs' overall point differential is the worst among West playoff teams.

A non-scientific theory is that the Mavs (West-best 22-13 road record) have been so good away from home because unfriendly confines for a level of intensity they've had trouble conjuring up consistently at home. The optimistic thought process is the playoffs will force that type of intensity at home, too.

Cuban went so far as to suggest that the Mavs' seeding isn't that important because they're such a strong road team. That's probably a stretch, considering that the rest of the West contenders are all much better at home than on the road.

Nevertheless, the Mavs' road success is a source of confidence. It's also the primary reason they're in position to have homecourt advantage through the first two rounds.