Saturday, March 10, 2012
Rapid Reaction: Warriors 111, Mavs 87
By Jeff Caplan
How it happened: The Dallas Mavericks showed little will early on to produce any other outcome than what went down Saturday night at Oracle Arena. The Warriors led by 19 points midway through the second quarter as the Mavs' body language matched their intensity level. A seemingly total lack of interest allowed for a double-digit deficit in the first quarter.
Yes, it was the final game of the brutal, nine-in-12 stretch and it was Dallas' fifth game in six nights. But, for a team desperate for a win, the Mavs started out looking desperate just to get back in their own beds. The silver lining here is that they have two days off with two of the worst teams in the league coming to the American Airlines Center. The Washington Wizards are there Tuesday followed by the Charlotte Bobcats on Thursday.
If either of those teams comes in and somehow continues the Mavs' misery, then look out, this season will officially be under the gun.
Jason Kidd took Saturday night off after playing 30 minutes in Phoenix and 22 in Sacramento on this three-in-three. Center Brendan Haywood (sprained left ankle) dressed, but he did not play for a fourth consecutive game.
Dallas showed a pulse as it cut a 19-point lead to seven in the third quarter, but the Warriors continued to create turnovers and hit 3-pointers (7-of-14 after three quarters) to keep the Mavs at a safe distance. By the time the period was over, Golden State, led by Monta Ellis' 17 third-quarter points (20 overall) pumped up the lead to first-half levels -- 17, 83-66.
Through three quarters, the Warriors shot 55.2 percent while the Mavs were mired at 38.6 percent.
What it means: The Mavs finish the nine-in-12 with a 2-7 record and get swept in their lone back-to-back-to-back of the season. They have lost eight of their last 10 and seven in a row on the road (8-13 overall). Dallas heads home with a 23-20 record and in eighth place in the Western Conference. They have not been as few as three games over .500 since the Feb. 4 loss at Cleveland to drop to 14-11.
Bold play of the game: With the Mavs trying to keep chipping away, Jason Terry made a terrible pass from the corner to the free throw line that was picked off by Ellis for a 14th turnover midway through the third quarter. Ellis soared in for the layup and was lackadaisically fouled by Dominique Jones. Although Ellis missed the free throw, it still put Golden State back up 12, 69-57. The Warriors ended the period with a flurry to go up by 17.
Stat of the game: On a night the Mavs could have used an I-got-your-back game from Lamar Odom, he finishes with three points on 1-of-6 shooting in just 16:28 before getting a few extra minutes of garbage time late in the game.