Well, despite what Charles Barkley may believe (“I cannot believe how bad the NBA is”), there is still a lot of good game in the NBA today. In fact, we have seen a highly competitive (if slightly off-kilter) season thus far in 2011 and 2012. However, the biggest question on the minds of Mavericks fans is can they do it again?
Actually last season’s win was unexpected as many commentators, experts and even fans predicted they were too weak to take the season. However, they went on to win their first ever NBA Championship in 2011. Now, experts are saying the exact same thing as last year–the Mavericks are looking weak…ish.
Well, it is hard to look that good all season around, especially when compared to teams that are younger than the Mavericks’ roster; teams like Oklahoma City Thunder and the Denver Nuggets. Nevertheless, Mavericks fans (and a few sources in the media) are still counting on the Mavericks to be an NBA contender long into the Western Conference Finals and beyond.
One of the reasons the team still has supporters is because they have roster depth and some great offense–something that younger teams have not yet demonstrated. Some of management’s welcome decisions as of late have included Lamar Odom, Vince Carter and Delonte West. They also have seven feet of power in Dirk Nowitzki, who just won the MVP last year.
As it stands on February 1, 2012, the Dallas Mavericks are at the top of the Southwest Division, leading with a win-loss record of 14-8. Their closest competitors are the San Antonio Spurs with 13-9, and the Houston Rockets with 12-9. However, this division domination is relative to the entire NBA. Right now, three teams are ahead of the Mavericks: Oklahoma City Thunder, 16-4, the Los Angeles Clippers (12-6) and the Denver Nuggets who are tied with 14 wins but with only seven losses.
Is it coincidence that the leading teams in the NBA are also the “younger” teams? Is age and energy going to be the deciding factor this season or is it still a question of strong offense? Let’s hear your thoughts…