Saturday, October 13, 2012
Dirk Nowitzki starts in Mavs' scrimmage
By Skin Wade / ESPNDallas.com
The final score of 33-27 didn't matter so much in the Dallas Mavericks' 12-minute Blue/White scrimmage Saturday night at the AAC. It was seeing Dirk Nowitzki on the floor starting for the White team that was most important.
There is no doubt that the uncertainty regarding Nowitzki's knee and whether he needs to get it scoped before the season starts is dominating all Mavs' talk as opposed to how the new guys will fit in or what the rotation will look like when the season begins.
Rodrigue Beaubois (ankle) and O.J. Mayo, who coach Rick Carlisle revealed had cut his hand before playing in the Barcelona game, were the only two Mavs to not see time in the scrimmage. Their absence opened up an opportunity for Dominique Jones to play a prominent role and he did a great job breaking down the defense for the Blue squad and consistently getting in the lane for feeds to Brandan Wright -- who finished with an unofficial eight points.
New center Chris Kaman got several opportunities to score with touches up top, as well as on the block, and new point Darren Collison looked to push the tempo as often as possible for the White team.
Scrimmages are for fans to see and meet the new players, soak in a nice atmosphere (free of charge) and make a little noise. But for just about everybody in the building, Dirk being on the floor was what this night was ultimately about. And if he's able to hit the floor Monday night against Houston in the Mavs' first preseason home game, then you'd have to say everything about this team since it arrived back from its European jaunt has been looking up.