Dallas Mavericks

Mekel has strong belief in his game

DALLAS -- For Gal Mekel, it was more than just a huge 3-pointer in a meaningless preseason game. It was a statement from the Dallas Mavericks’ point guard that there’s more where that came from.

Mekel’s triple tied Tuesday’s Mavs-Houston Rockets game at 108-all with 6.9 seconds left. Although the Rockets went on to prevail, 111-108, the fact that Mekel could step into and hit a clutch 3-pointer under those stressful circumstances spoke volumes about the second-year veteran from Israel.

"He’s been here for over a year and I have yet to see him step into any shot and not believe it’s going to go in,’’ coach Rick Carlisle said after Thursday’s practice at American Airlines Center. "He’s got a strong belief in his game and his abilities, and that’s one of his strengths, too.’’

Mekel finished Tuesday’s game with seven points, two rebounds and a blocked shot in just 12 minutes. He also was 3-of-4 from the floor in one of his strongest overall performances in a Mavs uniform.

"He’s just continuing to grind away at it,’’ Carlisle said. "There were just some things about his shot.

"It got him by in Europe to some degree. But you know our 3-point line is a lot farther out, our athletes are a lot more dynamic, so he’s been working on a quick release and obviously shooting with greater range.’’

Whatever positives Mekel brings to the court theses days are viewed as a bonus. Particularly since he plays a position where the Mavs are loaded with the likes of Jameer Nelson, Devin Harris and Raymond Felton.

"The shot he hit at the end of the game was a good indicator of the work he’s put in,’’ Carlisle said. "He’s had a real good camp and he did some good things in the game the other night, so I been really impressed with him so far.’’