Coach Rick Carlisle believes Dallas Mavericks forward Jeremy Evans may have set some sort of record.
Evans asked Carlisle if he could leave the Mavs temporarily and be assigned to play for the Texas Legends in Friday’s NBA D-League game in Frisco. He scored 17 points in the game.
To my knowledge it’s the first time in NBA history it’s ever happened.
Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle on Jeremy Evans’ request to play in a D-League game
Now in his sixth season, Evans wanted to work on a few things that could help him once he returns to the Mavs.
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Carlisle said he knows of no established veteran asking to go play in the D-League under any circumstances.
“To my knowledge it’s the first time in NBA history it’s ever happened,” Carlisle said. “He’s a five-year veteran in the league with a multiyear contract asking if it’s possible to go play D-League games to work on playing the [small forward] position, because that’s an area where he needs experience.”
I just thought that it could help me.
Jeremy Evans on playing in a D-League game
Evans said he didn’t consider it unusual that a player with his experience would play in any D-League games.
“I just thought that it could help me,” Evans said. “I got to pick up the guys just about full court, and that’s what I wanted to work on.
“Of course, offensively I took a couple of 3s. But that was my main focus — guarding guys.”
Rookies Justin Anderson and Salah Mejri also played in Friday’s D-League game.
“It’s a great thing to see, it’s a great example for teammates,” Carlisle said of Evans’ D-League appearance. “It’s a guy that’s trying to get better for the team and increase his value. It’s great to see.
“As far as Anderson, we want to keep him with the team as much a possible. But if there are games and opportunities for him to play when he wouldn’t play otherwise, then you have to send him.”
Anderson made the 70-mile round-trip to Frisco on his own.
“I like the chance to be able to get up and down and play for longer times, longer spurts, I guess I should say,” he said. “To be able to kind of get a groove going offensively. Defensively, it challenges your one-on-one defense.”
What the Golden State Warriors accomplished, winning their first 24 games, was such a phenomenal feat that players around the NBA couldn’t get enough of them.
The Mavs didn’t play Friday, so guards Raymond Felton and Wesley Matthews took in a D-League game in Frisco, where teammates Anderson, Evans and Mejri were playing.
The Warriors were in the midst of a double-overtime win over the Boston Celtics.
“Me and Wesley were sitting there watching [the Warriors-Celtics game] on the phone,” Felton said. “I thought Boston was going to pull it off, but they didn’t.
“Golden State is a tough team. They’re having fun and they’re playing great ball right now.”
The Warriors’ streak ended Saturday night with a loss at Milwaukee. They visit the Mavs on Dec. 30.
Asked his thoughts on the Warriors’ streak, Mavs owner Mark Cuban said: “Everybody is excited about it. I hate it, but it’s good for the league. I would like to see them come in here 24-6.”
▪ Cuban said he’s received no feedback from NBA headquarters concerning his rant after Wednesday 98-95 loss to the Atlanta Hawks. Cuban complained that players have been camping out in the lane for as long as nine seconds without being whistled for a 3-second violation.
▪ Point guard Deron Williams missed Saturday’s game with an upset stomach.