Dirk Nowitzki doubts Mavericks’ team
If the NBA playoffs started today, the Dallas Mavericks would be owners of the 8th seed. They’d end up facing the San Antonio Spurs, and more than likely, they’d be on their way to a four or five game series, before departing on their “gone fishing” trip.
Mavs’ superstar, Dirk Nowitzki, seems to realize this, and doesn’t believe this current team is a playoff caliber team, and he would know.
“The way we let those games slip away, I don’t think we’re a playoff team,” Nowitzki said on Friday night after the Mavericks lost to the Clippers. “We’ve got to win those games. We’ve got to find a way to get those stops and protect the home court.”
Dirk suffered a sprained ankle in the 119-112 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in Dallas. However, he was able to finish the game, unlike Clippers’ star, Chris Paul. Paul separated his shoulder during the second half, and was unable to finish the game. He’ll miss 3-6 weeks due to injury. Dirk was upset that the Mavericks couldn’t capitalize late in the game when the Clippers were without their best player.
“It’s a game we can’t lose,” Nowitzki said. “Can’t afford to lose that one.”
Dirk’s frustrations are understandable. They’ve got talent, but losing to a tough western foe, minus their superstar point-guard, is unacceptable, especially at home. These are games you have to win if you plan to compete at this level.
“It just always comes down for us to getting stops and rebounds,” Nowitzki said. “If we don’t, we’re in trouble. If you look at the numbers, we scored 112 [and] we shot over 50 percent. There’s no way we should have lost that game.
“We’ve got to do better. We knew coming into the season that we were going to be challenged on rebounding and defense. We’ve got to try harder.”
As I alluded to above – This team has talent. Dirk seems to be pointing to the effort things. The extra hustle that it takes to win close games. The type of basketball a team has to play during the post-season. The brand of basketball that Dallas currently isn’t playing. These are the things the Mavericks will need to do to win against good teams, and Dirk knows this. That is where his doubts come from.