Mavs go 1-1 in Europe, reload for preseason
Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 17:11
Dallas began the preseason with a trip to veteran forward Dirk Nowitzki’s home country and an 89-84 win versus German club Alba Berlin Saturday.
The Mavericks’ performance was far from perfect as the team committed 26 turnovers, but the play of new signings, Darren Collison and Chris Kaman, more than made up for the squad’s shortcomings.
The two combined for 28 points, while Collison added nine assists to Kaman’s six rebounds.
Nowitzki did not have an outstanding outing, but was able to contribute eight points on three of nine shooting. Given the tumultuous end of the postseason and beginning of the offseason, any decent showing by Dirk is a happy sight.
After what began as a tragic offseason that had many wondering if Dallas would be selecting a lottery pick in next year’s NBA draft, Mark Cuban’s squad was able to turn lemons into lemonade heading into this upcoming season.
With new acquisitions in guards Collison and O.J. Mayo along with centers Kaman and Elton Brand, the Mavericks recovered from an early offseason scare.
The new guard duo will add a scoring and assist threat while Kaman and Brand will provide a veteran presence under the basket.
The Mavericks will still rely heavily upon Nowitzki, who will enter his 15th season as the franchise’s scoring leader and the 19th best in NBA history.
Other veterans, such as Shawn Marion and Vince Carter, will have to provide consistency on both sides of the court against a talented Western Conference.
While the Mavericks’ new signings were significant, the first real test will be opening night when Dallas travels to Los Angeles to take on what many are calling the best team in the league.
Former Dallas point guard Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant lead a team that will compete with the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Miami Heat for the best record going into the playoffs: each of which will be a tremendous challenge for the Mavs.
Even though the competition in the West will not allow the Mavericks to relax, if they play within the boundaries of head coach Rick Carlisle’s system, a top-five playoff seed should be attainable.
The goal of the regular season should be to avoid an unfavorable matchup in the first round of the playoffs, while getting out of the first round will be the deciding factor for a successful 2012-2013 campaign.
The preseason continued Tuesday night when the Mavericks traveled to Spain to compete against FC Barcelona Regal.
Despite Kaman leading the team with 15 points and 10 rebounds, the Mavs lost to the 17-time Spanish champs, 99-85.
The team returns to Dallas to take on Houston on Oct. 15.