The Dallas Mavericks finally clinched a Playoffs spot after almost four years of failing to make it in the first round of the postseason.
The past few days in the NBA bubble proved that this season is as unpredictable as it can be. The first day showed a powerful nail-biting duo of games with the Lakers and the Jazz winning. However, despite their formidable composition, the Lakers looked weak against the reigning NBA champions a couple of days after.
Unfortunately, the bottom teams in the Western Conference do not live up to the hype expected of them. The Pelicans and the Grizzlies still have to find their first win in the bubble. Nonetheless, a good thing has come out of these losses, and the Mavs finally clinched a spot in the Playoffs after four years.
Dallas Mavericks are still winless
Just like the Grizzlies and Pels, the Dallas Mavericks have still yet to find their first W in the bubble. Fortunately, they are not in the position to lose their Playoffs slot anymore. Because of the loss of Grizzlies against the Spurs, the Mavs has received its ticket for the postseason.
Despite the back-to-back losses, the Mavs are proving their mettle for the Playoffs. In their first official game back, Luka Doncic and Porzingis went down to the line in 153-149 overtime loss against the Houston Rockets. Their game was a nailbiter up until the buzzer. It was just unfortunate that their fourth-quarter jitters popped up again.
The Mavs have been weak during the clutch periods of this season. The playing style they maintain for the first 43 minutes of the game vanishes towards during the last five. The ball always stays with Luka with stagnant isolation plays that end up with brick shots.
What does the Mavs need to do?
The Dallas Mavericks is a deep team. They have enough firepower from their bench that can pick up the slump of the starting five. Seth Curry and JJ Barea are both capable guards that buoy a team until the teams’ stars find their groove. However, consistency is key for the team.
Outside of Luka and Kristaps, the Mavs distribute the scoring load heavily between Hardaway Jr. and Curry. Besides these two, they have capable shooters in Trey Burke, Justin Jackson, and the recently improved Dorian Finney Smith. All five of these players are keys to the success of the team.
The defensive plays of the teams gravitate naturally toward Porzingis and Doncic. As such, the wing players and cutters of the Mavs have to be consistently present to catch and shoot the ball.
The Playoffs will be ruthless for the young team, and they have to figure out their fourth-quarter woes fast. Otherwise, they may end up exiting early from the NBA bubble.
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