Timberwolves vs. Mavericks
Chandler Parsons scores 29 points with 6 rebounds as the Mavericks beat the Timberwolves 101-128.
Final: Mavs 128, Timberwolves 101
Box Score | Highlights
Behind the Box Score
As a team, Dallas attempted 51 jump shots in the game, and 24 of them were what the team considers “open.” SportVU characterizes an “open” jumper as a shot where the defender is between 4-6 feet away from the shooter, but the Mavs use slightly harsher criteria. The team’s average usually hovers between 30-35 percent open, so it’s a very good sign that Dallas was able to generate an open shot nearly 50 percent of the time.
The Mavericks improved to 12-3 this season when Chandler Parsons records at least four assists.
The Mavs’ 39-point first quarter matches the club’s highest-scoring quarter of the season. Dallas also scored 39 in the fourth quarter against Washington on Dec. 12.
I don’t want to hammer you over the head with love for Chandler Parsons at the 4, but he’s been awfully hard to ignore for the last month-plus, averaging 19.8 points per game on 52.6 percent shooting in his last 17 games. Those numbers only improved tonight, as Parsons finished with 29 points on 10-of-15 shooting, including 4 of 7 from deep. When he’s going the way he has been these last several weeks, Parsons is one of the most dynamic players in the NBA. There aren’t many 6-foot-10 (with a ratchet) wings with his combination of shooting, finishing, ball-handling, passing, and playmaking. There’s no denying Parsons has been playing at an All-Star level for a while now.
On a night when Dirk Nowitzki was in foul trouble, the Mavs still produced plenty of points offensively. The German picked up his fourth foul of the game with more than 10 minutes left in the third quarter, sitting out almost the entire rest of the frame. Still, the Mavericks finished with 34 points in the third to take a 99-74 lead. Ninety-nine points is the most the club has scored through three quarters since April 1, 2015, per Basketball-Reference. It’s been a pleasant surprise to see how well the team has performed without Nowitzki this season, especially given the struggles Dallas has run into in previous years when he was either on the bench or out due to injury. But with the help of Parsons, Wesley Matthews, Deron Williams, and the rest of the team, the Mavs have been able to survive those stretches and even often gain ground in those situations, while of course still playing at a high level when Dirk is in the game. (Nowitzki, by the way, finished with 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting.)
The Mavs had no trouble out of the gate in this game, scoring 39 points in the first quarter on 16-of-25 shooting. Dallas scored 18 points at the rim alone, finishing with a shot chart that would make plenty of other teams jealous.
Hot shooting is always a good thing, but the Mavs have struggled in particular this season with getting off to quick starts to command an advantage, especially against teams with losing records. It’s good to see, after what happened Friday night, that it wasn’t an issue again in this game.
As a whole, the Mavs’ offense has been nearly unstoppable in the last week or so. The Mavs’ three highest-scoring games of the season have all come in the last four games, and that they’ve all come against teams with below-.500 records shouldn’t matter: You can’t choose who you play in this league, but the one thing you can control in this league is, as the Mavs’ video intro points out, effort. The offense has been sizzling, and that’s obviously a good thing for a team that had been struggling with scoring at a high level in the weeks leading up to the All-Star break. But now that the Mavericks aren’t playing a huge amount of back-to-backs, and it appears Matthews’ shooting struggles are now firmly in the rear-view mirror, this Dallas offense has completely opened up. It’ll be exciting to see how long the club can ride this wave of momentum.
The Mavs (32-28) play the Orlando Magic (26-32) Tuesday at American Airlines Center. Tip-off is at 6 p.m. Central.