Mavericks look for turnaround during 4-game homestand

Posted Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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After a road trip that started with great hope and ended with disappointment, the Dallas Mavericks hope to bounce back and rack up some wins during a four-game homestand, starting Sunday night against Detroit.

The Mavericks play the Pistons at 6:30 p.m. Sunday at American Airlines Center. The homestand also includes games Wednesday against the Houston Rockets, Friday against the Sacramento Kings and Feb. 3 against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Dallas went 1-2 on its most recent road trip, which began with Monday’s 102-97 victory at Cleveland. The Mavericks then blew a 21-point lead Wednesday and lost in Toronto 93-85 before ending the trip with Friday’s 107-106 loss in Brooklyn.

With four games at home, the Mavericks hope to right the ship before it sinks.

“We were playing good and headed in the right direction and we got knocked four steps back,” guard Monta Ellis said. “But the biggest thing is we’ve just got to stay together, continue to stay as a team and get better. Hopefully, we can get back on track and the home court can be a disadvantage to the other team.”

The Mavericks have complained that the schedule-maker hasn’t been kind to them lately. From Jan. 15-24, the Mavericks played six games, with only one at home.

In four consecutive games from Jan. 15-20, the Mavericks played in four time zones: Jan. 15 in Los Angeles against the Clippers (Pacific Time Zone), Jan. 17 in Phoenix (Mountain), Jan. 18 in Dallas against Portland (Central), and Monday in Cleveland (Eastern).

“Actually, [incoming NBA commissioner] Adam Silver got us pretty good here the last couple of weeks with the schedule, I’ve got to admit,” forward Dirk Nowitzki said. “So we’ve got to take care now of home court. We’ve been decent at home, even though we lost some here in the New Year. But we feel like we’re a good team at home, so we’ve got to take care of business starting [today].”

Resting Nowitzki

The Mavericks set off alarm bells around the Metroplex when they sat a healthy Nowitzki during Wednesday’s game in Toronto.

With a stint of games all across the country, the Mavericks said they simply wanted to give the 35-year-old Nowitzki some much-needed rest. Owner Mark Cuban said the Mavericks will sit Nowitzki a few more games this season, if need be.

When Nowitzki returned Friday against Brooklyn, he faced a massive set of double teams throughout the game and wound up shooting 5 of 15 from the field while scoring 18 points. He also wore a protective sleeve over his left knee.

“It hasn’t been great the last couple of weeks, but it hardly bothered me any [Friday],” Nowitzki said of the knee. “It’s kind of been a little stiff. But if you’re 35, 36, something is going to be stiff.”

Harris makes strides

The play of guard Devin Harris during Friday’s loss to Brooklyn was encouraging for the Mavericks.

Although he fouled out in only 16 minutes, Harris scored a season-high 14 points and handed out four assists. He also was 4 of 6 from the field, including 2 of 3 from 3-point range.

In his first three games this season Harris scored only 11 points, dispensed five assists and was 4 of 14 from the floor, including 1 of 6 from beyond the 3-point arc.

“My legs are starting to get underneath me,” said Harris, who returned Jan. 18 from surgery in August on his left foot. “I’m gaining confidence each and every game. It’s something to build on.”

Ledo to D-League

The Mavericks sent guard Ricky Ledo back to the Texas Legends on Saturday. This is the rookie’s third stint with the Legends in the D-League. In 15 games with the Legends, Ledo is averaging 14.1 points and 6.7 rebounds in 29.8 minutes per game.

Dwain Price, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @dwainprice

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Wednesday, August 20Full Scoreboard
Texas «5Final | Box
Miami4
Seattle3Final | Box
Philadelphia «4
Toronto «9Final | Box
Milwaukee5
NY Mets «8Final | Box
Oakland5
Houston1Bottom 4th | Box
NY Yankees0@theBallpark | TV: CSN-HOU, YES
Atlanta1Bottom 5th | Box
Pittsburgh0@theBallpark | TV: SPSO, ROOT-PIT
Arizona0Bottom 4th | Box
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LA Angels0Bottom 3rd | Box
Boston3@theBallpark | TV: FSN-W, NESN, ESPN 2
Detroit1Top 5th | Box
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San Francisco2Top 1st | Box
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Chicago WSox0@theBallpark | TV: MASN 2, CSN-CHI
Cleveland0Bottom 1st | Box
Minnesota0@theBallpark | TV: STO, FSN-N
Kansas City 8/20 8:40 PM ET
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San Diego 8/20 10:10 PM ET
Los Angeles TV: FSN-SD, SNLA, ESPN
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Thursday
Pittsburgh 7:30 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: NFL Network, KDKA, 6ABC
Friday
Jacksonville 7:30 PM ET
Detroit TV: WXYZ7
Carolina 7:30 PM ET
New England TV: Panthers TV, WBZ
NY Giants 7:30 PM ET
NY Jets TV: CBS 2
Oakland 8:00 PM ET
Green Bay TV: CBS
Chicago 10:00 PM ET
Seattle TV: NFL Net, FOX32, Q13FOX
Saturday
Tampa Bay 4:30 PM ET
Buffalo TV: NFL Network, WFLA
Tennessee 7:00 PM ET
Atlanta TV: WKRN, CW69
Dallas 7:00 PM ET
Miami TV: KTVT, CBS11, CBS4
Washington 7:30 PM ET
Baltimore TV: NBC4, CSN-DC, WBAL
St. Louis 8:00 PM ET
Cleveland TV: WKYC
New Orleans 8:00 PM ET
Indianapolis TV: CBS
Minnesota 8:00 PM ET
Kansas City TV: KARE 11, KCTV
Houston 9:00 PM ET
Denver TV: KTRK, KUSA
Sunday
San Diego 4:00 PM ET
San Francisco TV: FOX
Cincinnati 8:00 PM ET
Arizona TV: NBC
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