Mavericks face 15-day defining stretch

Wins will be important, but not as much as the number of players who emerge healthy

Updated: February 8, 2012, 12:32 AM ET
By Jeff Caplan | ESPNDallas.com

DALLAS -- With Dirk Nowitzki finally turning the corner, Jason Kidd at a standstill and the Dallas Mavericks threatening to become the first reigning champion in NBA history not to boast an All-Star, is there any way to know who this team is or even which direction it's headed?

The popular theory was to withhold judgment until the one-third point of the season because of the radical changes to the roster and the lockout-driven condensed schedule. But the one-third point has come and gone ...

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