DALLAS – Rick Carlisle is very concerned about Wednesday’s game against the Utah Jazz.
Very concerned that his Dallas Mavericks, minus center Tyson Chandler, may not be able to match wits with the Jazz on the boards.
"These guys, pound for pound, they’re the No. 1 offensive rebounding team in basketball and they’ve got a bunch of big, physical (butt)-kickers and we need help with Tyson being out,’’ Carlisle said after Tuesday’s practice. "We’re hoping we can get it done, but there’s no guarantees.’’
The Jazz start Derrick Favors (6-10, 262), Enes Kanter (6-11, 245) and Gordon Hayward (6-8, 225) on their front wall, with Rudy Gobert (7-1, 245) and Trevor Booker (6-8, 230) as part of their package off the bench.
Utah is tied for eighth in the NBA in offensive rebounds at 11.8 per game. That could be detrimental to the Mavs sans Chandler.
"They’re a big, strong physical team,’’ forward Chandler Parsons said. "Their front line rebounds very well.
"The bigs are going to have their hands full just blocking those guys out, so the guards have to come in and collectively rebound.’’
The Mavs (35-19) host the Jazz (19-33) Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at American Airlines Center. It’ll be the final game for the Mavs before the week-long All-Star break commences, and Carlisle knows the ramifications for both teams.
"Make no mistake, it’s a big game for Utah, too,’’ he said. "They’re a young team that’s getting better and gaining momentum and gaining confidence.’’
The Mavs know if they can stay with the Jazz on the boards and gain some momentum from that, they should be able to dance into the All-Star break with a victory.