Dallas Mavericks: Aaron Afflalo

W2W4: Nene leads young Nuggets to town

December, 26, 2011
The Dallas Mavericks have plenty to improve upon tonight as the Denver Nuggets -- with former Mavs forward Corey Brewer and former Mavs guard that never was Rudy Fernandez -- open their season at American Airlines Center.

The good news is the Nuggets aren't the Miami Heat, who outrebounded Dallas 51-31, scored 97 points through three quarters and drove to the rim with impunity. Still, a revamped Nuggets squad that is without the likes of Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Kenyon Martin, J.R. Smith and Wilson Chandler averaged 118.5 points in two preseason games and will look to run and gun and hand the defending champions consecutive losses for the first time since April 21 and 23 in the first round against the Portland Trail Blazers.

"The rebounding is a concern, turnovers are a concern, overall defense from a consistency standpoint is a concern," Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. "Denver is going to come in here with a shot at the champs. It's a situation where we've got to work to make quantum leaps as often and as quickly as we can as a team.

When: 7:30 p.m.

Where: American Airlines Center


Radio: 103.3 FM ESPN/1270 AM (Spanish)

What to watch: So, who starts at shooting guard? Vince Carter started Sunday, but Delonte West got the call to start the second half against the Heat because Carlisle said he was looking for playmaking. Carlisle also said the starter at two-guard could change from game to game depending on matchups. The Nuggets start veteran Andre Miller at point guard and the 6-foot-5 Aaron Afflalo is expected to start at shooting guard. This would seem to favor Carter starting with West coming off the bench to back up Jason Kidd and check Denver reserve Ty Lawson. ... Look for the Mavs to involve Lamar Odom early in the offensive sets. He swished his first shot on his first possession entering the game midway through the first quarter, but he missed all of his next five shots and was saddled with early foul trouble before ejected in the third quarter for arguing a charging call.

Key matchup: Brendan Haywood vs. Nene
Haywood had little offensive impact Sunday and defensively he finished up Sunday's opener with no blocked shots and one defensive rebound in 13:38 of playing time. The Heat don't have much of a low-post game, instead using their All-NBA wings to attack the rim. Tonight Haywood gets a chance to bang with skilled and agile big man Nene, who spurned lucrative free-agent offers elsewhere to return to a young and intriguing Nuggets team. Haywood was plagued by foul trouble Sunday, picking up two quickies before the end of the first half for three and then another quick one to start the second half for a fourth. On the surface, this is a difficult matchup for Haywood, but asking Ian Mahinmi or Brandan Wright to stick with Nene for long stretches could be a dangerous proposition.

Injuries: Nuggets - None. Mavs - Shawn Marion (fractured left pinkie finger) is probable.

Up next: Mavs at Oklahoma City Thunder, 7 p.m., Thursday

Lockout levity: Those crazy Nuggets

November, 25, 2011
Well, well, well, the owners and the players are have resumed negotiations and today looms as a critical period if the league is sincere about getting things up and running for a Christmas start.

We've heard the two sides have been close before and how'd that end? With phrases like "total breakdown of the collective bargaining process" and the scariest of all, "nuclear winter."

Maybe it will be just a few weeks of a nuclear autumn?

We'll find out over the course of the next few days. For now let's take a look at the latest Dallas Mavericks game gone down the tubes because of the lockout.

Today's canceled game: at Denver Nuggets

Game No.: 13

Mavs pretend record: 8-4

Last season's matchup: Who doesn't remember where they were on Feb. 10, 2010, when the Mavs stood 2:51 away from running their second long win streak of the season to 11 games on the home floor of the proud, but not all together bright, Denver Nuggets. The Mavs eased up just a bit too soon. The Nuggets rallied, Dirk Nowitzki amazingly missed a free throw to lead by just two and Aaron Afflalo, who scored 19 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter, dropped the incredible game-winner, a 19-foot jumper at the buzzer for the win. Carmelo Anthony had fouled after scoring 42 points and Chauncey Billups had 30. Jason Terry led the Mavs with 25 points and Tyson Chandler had 20 points and 11 boards. Nowitzki finished with 16 with one of those rare, low-scoring games. The Mavs then won their next eight games. Yet, who can forget April 6 as well when the new-look Nuggets came into Dallas and beat the Mavs when coach Rick Carlisle controversially rested Jason Kidd against a team they might face in the first round, and a team -- as Nuggets coach George Karl pointed out -- that wanted the Mavs.

What might have been: Things are always interesting when these two clubs meet. But, wow, this season would be a totally different story. Anthony and Billups both play in New York. Sixth man J.R. Smith is a free agent and might not be back. Impressive center Nene is one of the top three free agents with the Mavs' Chandler and New Orleans' David West. About the only thing that can be guaranteed in this matchup is a lot of scoring.

What's been missed: The Mavs have obviously missed getting their championship rings and raising the banner. Among the first 13 games canceled, four division games have been wiped out, plus fun matchups against the Nuggets and Oklahoma City.

Next canceled game: Saturday vs. Cleveland Cavaliers

Roddy B's summer school starts today

July, 9, 2010
Summer school is now in session for Roddy Beaubois as the Dallas Mavericks summer league squad opens play today in Las Vegas at 3 p.m. against the Denver Nuggets.

The game will be streamed live on ESPN3.com and televised on NBA TV.

Beaubois is expected to get heavy minutes at point guard, while first-round draft pick Dominique Jones will be the prime shooting guard. But, make no mistake, this summer is all about the development of Beaubois. The Mavs have significant hopes that the young Frenchman will add an explosive offensive dynamic the team has been missing for years.

In fact, coach Rick Carlisle said Thursday on ESPN 103.3 FM that Beaubois could be inserted into the starting lineup.

It's a lot to ask from a 22-year-old, who only two years ago was playing in a low-level league in France and barely spoke English. To his credit, Beaubois said he's ready for the expectations and the scrutiny.

"For sure, I can see that people really want me to do good things, so I really appreciate it," Beaubois said. "I just have to work. I need to work and try to get better every day. It is a process."

Beaubois will match up today against Denver's second-year guard Ty Lawson, who had a terrific rookie season, as well as Nuggets shooting guard Aaron Afflalo. Unlike last year in Vegas, when Beaubois was a total unknown, he will be a prime motivator this time around for his competition.

Mavs assistant coach Darrell Armstrong, who will coach the summer team with Monte Mathis, said Beaubois has the proper approach to handle the pressure.

"I always looked at him and I watched him -- I watch guys -- he don't have no fear. He don't have no fear of who he's playing against and that started probably with Gilbert Arenas up in Washington in a preseason game [last year]," Armstrong said. "Coach [Rick Carlisle] threw him in in the beginning of the second half. I know he knows who Agent Zero is, but I tell you what, he got up in Gilbert and I don't give a damn if a veteran don't want to play in the preseason, he made Agent Zero play.

"He was stealing the ball, he was scoring. That showed me that his courage is good, his challenge is good, he likes that opportunity and he likes a challenge and he'll have no fear. He's not scared. He wants that pressure and everybody don't want that. They might say they want it, but put him in that situation and he can respond and he's been doing it. That's what I like about him."



Dirk Nowitzki
21.7 2.7 0.9 32.9
ReboundsS. Marion 6.5
AssistsM. Ellis 5.7
StealsM. Ellis 1.7
BlocksB. Wright 0.9