Nuggets vs. Mavericks
Deron Williams leads Dallas with 22 points as they shut down Denver at home, 92-81.
Final: Mavs 92, Nuggets 81
Box Score | Highlights
Behind the Box Score
The Mavs scored 1.13 points or more per possession in both the second and third quarters. If you’re going to have two back-to-back frames like that, odds are you aren’t going to lose many games at all, especially if you play the type of active defense Dallas did tonight. The Mavs turned Nuggets mistakes into easy offense the other way, which is exactly what good teams do.
The Mavs opened up a big lead in the third quarter behind a very long Denver scoring drought. Dallas scored the first 16 points of the third frame before the Nuggets finally notched a point at the 3:05 mark. Denver entered the game 0-3 on the second night of back-to-backs this season, and after losing last night in San Antonio, the onus was on the Mavs to push the tempo and run the Nuggets out of the gym. Dallas was able to capitalize on seemingly every mistake, which played a huge role in the result of this one. For the quarter, Denver’s 5 points were the least scored by a Mavs opponent in franchise history, besting the previous low of 7 allowed against the Lakers in 2012. Denver turned it over 9 times in the third quarter alone.
Chandler Parsons made a few really nifty passes in this game, first finding a dive-cutting Dwight Powell from the top of the arc for a dunk, and then later in the game to a cutting Zaza Pachulia, who drew a shooting foul. Parsons is still working his way into a steady rhythm this season, so it was very positive to see him able to find teammates. It indicates that the players are beginning to grow more in sync.
After the first quarter, the Mavs had more steals (6) than total rebounds (4). Dirk Nowitzki had three of those boards. The Nuggets got off to a fairly hot start early and collected a couple offensive rebounds in the opening frame, but the biggest reason Dallas didn’t grab more rebounds is the team simply forced so many turnovers. Most of them came on wild entry passes to Nuggets big men, with Pachulia and Nowitzki tapping the ball loose for a steal. Dallas did very well in general against entry passes in this game.
During one sequence in the second quarter, Denver had Mike Miller playing the small-ball power forward against Nowitzki. As you could have guessed, Dallas stopped everything and went right to Dirk on the low block. He spun and scored for an easy layup on his first possession, and then the next time down the floor he drew a shooting foul against the over-matched Miller. It’s good to see the Mavs can collectively not only identify mismatches of that magnitude, but also take advantage of them.
The Mavs (10-7) play the Sacramento Kings (6-11) Monday at Sleep Train Arena. Tip-off is at 9 p.m. Central.