I got to go to this game (thanks to my father-in-law for taking me), and I was purely disgusted. I've seen some bad Mavs games in person, but this game might just take the cake because the other s**ty games were played by s**ty teams. This team is better than that. They just didn't care. It showed in the way they played. With the exception of Dirk, no one on the roster gave any effort. I'll see other games in person, but who knows if there weren't kids in the crowd that might never see a game again, and that's what they got treated to. A piss-poor, worthless effort.
1. Caron Butler - Not only did the Wizards beat the Mavs, but they beat them without their A#1 offensive weapon, Gilbert Arenas. Butler picked up the slack, though, with 35 points, 8 boards, a perfect 5 of 5 from behind the arc, 2 steals and a block. And his name is pronounced car-ON, not Karen.
2. Antawn Jamison - The one season when we had the Antawn/Antoine experiment was a disaster even though we still won 53 games and had one of our best home records in franchise history. But I place most of that blame on Antoine Walker. Jamison was a consummate professional, willing to take the 6th man role for us, and if we had never brought in Walker, I think he would have been a better compliment in a starting role with Dirk, Nash and Finley. I understand why he needed to be traded, and he got us Stackhouse and Devin Harris in return. Still, I'm not mad at him, and I wish him the best. I just wish that his best wasn't 27 points, 6 rebounds and 12 of 15 from the stripe to beat us.
3. J.J. Barea - The only guy in a Mavs jersey besides Dirk that gave a flying crap, but he didn't get into the game until it was too late. He managed 15 points in 12 minutes on 6 of 8 shooting.
- Dirk's Digits: 31 points on 10 of 18 shooting and 11 of 11 from the line, 8 boards, 6 assists (would have been more if his teammates could hit an shot), a block, a steal and only 1 turnover.
- I have always been a fan of the alternate jersey that teams wear occasionally, or even the throwback unis. But those gold things that Washington wears are just awful.
- The P.A. guy at the Mavs games is excruciatingly annoying, but to add to it he's trying to get the crowd to start chanting "J-Ho!" every time Josh Howard scores. Maybe Howard likes the nickname, but I don't. I don't know if it's because it sounds too much like Jennifer Lopez's nickname, or if it's because it has the word "Ho" in it. Regardless, I refuse to call him "J-Ho", and I wish that the P.A. guy would leave it alone.
- The officials are loving them some Wizards in this game. Not that the Mavs are helping matters with their lackluster play, but a good amount of the calls are very one-sided in Washington's favor.
- The only thing that went right for the Mavs in this one, besides the inspired play of Dirk and Barea was that they set a franchise record with 29 of 29 shooting from the free throw line. I guess it was a record for most free throws in one game without a miss, or it could have been a record for most free throws in a game in which the Mavs didn't show up to play.
- If you just look at the box score, this was relatively close. We beat them in rebounds, offensive rebounds, assists, and blocks, and we were basically even in steals and turnovers. The difference? We shot 39% from the field and let them shoot 50%. We were lucky to only lose by 12.
Every team has a clunker over the course of an 82 game season. That's not my problem. My problem is that there was no effort whatsoever, added to the fact that they still haven't played up to their potential. This team needs to turn a corner quickly just from a confidence standpoint, and with the schedule that is staring them in the face, 14 in the next 25 days before Christmas with 3 back to backs, they aren't in a position to get lackadaisical and fall too far behind. I hate to say it, but it's already gut check time. With all that said, Go Mavs!