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Thursday, February 23, 2012
Shawn Marion calls on bigs to screen like Lakers

By Jeff Caplan

DALLAS -- Shawn Marion was taking such punishment from rock-solid screens set by the Lakers' big men Wednesday night that he said he about had enough of it.

"It takes a lot out of you. Them big [expletives] hit me a couple of times, I wanted to fall down," said Marion, who couldn't afford to fall down because he was chasing NBA scoring leader Kobe Bryant. "They really take pride in making  sure they set some hard screens. A couple of them, I was like I was ready to hit somebody for real."

Marion said the Mavs' bigs don't set screens with the same level of commitment. For years Erick Dampier might have gotten ripped for fumbling balls out of bounds among other aspects of his game, but coach Avery Johnson always loved the way the big man stonewalled defenders with screens that sprung shooters for open looks.

Tyson Chandler happily performed that duty last season and Marion, who held Kobe Bryant to just 15 points on four field goals with seven turnovers, said the Mavs' bigs need to step it up.

"We got to start hitting people like that too," Marion said.