Part of the reason the Dallas Mavericks don’t get their fair share of rebounds is because they often don’t play a big lineup.
The Mavs normally start Zaza Pachulia (6-foot-11) at center, Dirk Nowitzki (7-feet) and Chandler Parsons (6-10) at the forward spots, and Deron Williams (6-3) and Wesley Matthews (6-5) in the backcourt. But when they go to the bench, the Mavs usually bring in David Lee (6-9), Devin Harris (6-3), Raymond Felton (6-1) and J.J. Barea (6-feet).
We play small a fair amount if you look at the size of our centers, who’s playing off the bench. So it’s got to be done with persistence and a consistent nose for the ball.
Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle
And a lot of times the Mavs will use a three-guard lineup, which means shorter players are on the court trying to rebound with the other team’s taller players.
“We play small a fair amount if you look at the size of our centers, who’s playing off the bench,” coach Rick Carlisle said. “So it’s got to be done with persistence and a consistent nose for the ball.”
The Mavs entered Monday’s game against Charlotte tied with the Utah Jazz for 17th in the NBA in rebounds with 43.1 per game. But while the Jazz are allowing opponents to grab only 40.2 rebounds per game, the Mavs’ opponents are collecting 46.5 rebounds.
“We aren’t a big strapping team to begin with, so we’ve got to be at the right place at the right time,” Carlisle said. “We always have to be in a pursuit mode and we’ve got to do it with five guys.”
David Lee has been with the Mavs for the better part of three weeks, and he’s already paying dividends.
I really like him. He provides us punch off the bench and he can score, and his rebounds per minutes are great. He’s just what the doctor ordered.
Donnie Nelson, Mavs’ president of basketball operations, on David Lee
In nine games since signing as a free agent on Feb. 22, Lee is averaging 10.6 points and 8.2 rebounds in only 18.8 minutes per contest.
“I really like him,” said Donnie Nelson, the Mavs’ president of basketball operations. “He provides us punch off the bench and he can score, and his rebounds per minute are great.
“He’s just what the doctor ordered.”
A center and power forward, Lee has done all of his work with the Mavs off the bench, where he has provided a much-needed spark.
“He’s rebounded well and he’s an efficient scorer,” Carlisle said. “I like the way he runs the floor, I like his energy.
“He’s doing good things off the bench for us and we just need him to keep doing that.”
New high low
In Monday’s game at Charlotte, the Mavs did something they hadn’t done all season.
Dallas led 52-33 at halftime, allowing its fewest first-half points all season.
The previous low was 34 scored by the Houston Rockets on Nov. 14.
Also, the Mavericks’ 19-point halftime lead was their largest in any game since they led the Orlando Magic 118-97 with 3:34 remaining on March 1. Dallas wound up winning 121-108.