It’s Mavs time :)

It’s time to go to work. Dallas Mavericks style. Once again the “pundits” and sportswriters are dismissing the Mavs for any number of reasons. Once again, we are going to use it as motivation to prove them wrong. I love what we have with our team.

I love the balance and depth we have at all positions. I love the comraderie the guys are showing on the court and off. I love the yin and yang of Avery Johsnon and Nellie working together. I think this could be a very exciting year.

Already in pre season there have been highlights that are memorable. Watching Avery coach in practice and seeing Nellie just smile and watch him. Culminating with AJ coaching against the Spurs. The General without question found his new calling. I sat next to Stack during the game, and as he said “This guy is going to be good.”

Watching Jason Terry interact with the fans before, during and after games. We have a lot of guys who go above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to making our fans and customers happy, but JT the Jet has raised the bar to a new level. From running through the crowd and high fiving everyone during his introduction to fans, or his rousing pre game speech letting everyone know there is a new Big D in Dallas and its called Defense. His energy is going to be infectious.

The development of DJ Mbenga and Devin Harris have been a joy. The DJ of summer league vs now is night and day. The kid has an amazing story, and is incredibly smart to go along with his athleticism. He has improved every game and practice. With his blackbelt in judo. If i ever run out on the court again, im taking him with me.

Devin Harris as the number 5 pick is expected to be good, but his demeanor, his passion and his ability are a great combination. Devin was Nellie’s pick. Watching film, Nellie pushed us all in Devin’s direction and he was right on. A little tidbit on DH. When we got the #5 pick, we sent up our team psychologist to NY to meet with as many of the kids we thought had a chance to be available at #5. We couldn’t talk to everyone we wanted to, but of the kids Don did speak to, without knowing what our scouts and Nellie thought about their playing ability, Don immediately started going on and on about Devin. Tough (he delayed getting a spleen operation in High School so he could qualify for a scholarship for college), smart, a good listener, leadership qualities, a quick learner, he went on and on. All of which contribute to the success Devin has had so far in the preseason. Its going to be fun watching DH grow as a player and person this year.

The new vets coming in also have been fun to be around. Alan Henderson is healthy again, and is bringing Bobby Knight basketball, great fundamentals to the team. Hendu won’t outrun, outjump or outshoot anyone, but he knows where to be and when on the court, and he practices so hard he makes the rest of the team better.

Since Stack has been hurt, I have had a chance to spend more time talking to him. A great guy. Chomping at the bit to get out there. He just wants to win. The 6th man role is unusual for him, but its ever more unusual for him not to have the pressure of carrying an entire team. I think he is recognizing and enjoying both. He has pushed himself to get back to practice ahead of schedule and looked amazing in practice yesterday.

Damp is a character. He has a sly sense of humor. Won’t say much, then out of no where, bam, some witty comment that will have guys cracking up. If you want to keep score, watch how many times he can get me with a towel when he comes out of a game. Minute I turn my head. Pop! On the court, he is getting more and more comfortable with his role. He knows he doesn’t have to score on set plays for us to win. That Dirk, Fin, Josh, whoever, will find him with the ball when teams rotate. All he has to do is catch and dunk. The real suprise from Damp, and I think one of the biggest benefits we will see from him, is the way he seals opposing centers creating layup lanes for him, or for a driving fin, devin,stack or JT. Thats something we have never had since I’ve been here and probably ever. A couple of those per game and Damp will have an impact that won’t showup in the stats.

Tuesday is when it gets real. I won’t say what i really think about the genius that started the season on election day since it’s probably the same person that started the season on Halloween in previous years. There’s only a presidential election 1x every 4 years. We start on that day..Genius. Let’s see, which are going to get more highlights and press coverage Nov 3rd. The kickoff of the NBA season or the election. The NBA has a great idea to feature “Premiere Week” and we start it on Election Night. Brilliant. It’s had an impact on us. We sold out our pre season home games, but we still have plenty of seats left for the home opener and also for the first couple games of the year. To help balance the brilliance of NBA marketing starting us off on election day, we created a special 3 pack of tickets. $25 dollar tickets (regularly 30 or 39 dollars) for 3 the first 3 games, for $75 dollars. Get em before they are gone!

On the Mavs entertainment front, we have all kinds of goodies planned for in game entertainment. We are proud that we get voted the best gameday presentation in the league, and we plan on raising the bar again this year. Let”s see what they fine me for this year!

One last note. One of my proudest moments as owner of the Mavs came at our last exhibition game with the Kings. At the prompting of Michael Finley, during the National Anthem, all of our players and staff stood with their hand over their heart. The fans saw this and did the same. With all the diversity of backgrounds and opinions, everyone used the moment as a sign of respect. It was great to be part of it.

nelly with players
mavs lineup 2004/2005

62 thoughts on “It’s Mavs time :)

  1. I was just wondering why you would own the fantastic HDNet, yet (the majority of) your games aren’t broadcast in HD? Is that determined by the league? I can catch all the Cowboys games in HD, but I’d much rather see the Mav’s kicking it up in HD! MFFL!

    Comment by JB2K -

  2. Your enthusiasm for this season is remarkable. You guys really do need to keep an on the defensive side of the ball, though. Could be another case of all firepower/no toughness. Dampier is a strong signing, but I’m wondering if you guys will miss the leadership Steve Nash brought to the team. I think you might. Terry and Harris splitting the PG will be interesting to watch.

    Comment by Alan -

  3. Why can’t Dallas win the Championship?
    I think the strongest hypothesis is: Nellie!!
    He is the Mad Scientist who believed in the Bradley project; who wanted Ewing to be a spot-up shooter; who couldn’t coach talent laden Warriors, which included Webber, Mullin, Billy Owens, Tim Hardaway, and Latrell Sprewell; who would have been fired if he didn’t beg to keep his job by promising that he will concentrate on defense; who boasts a mediocre regular season winning percentage; who has a losing playoffs winning percentage… The list goes on. I think Del Harris will do a better job than Nelson as a head coach. Nelson has keen talent assessment skills, but Harris might be a better tactician – Any thoughts on leaving Nelson as GM but giving the coach hat to Mr. Harris?

    Comment by Jay -

  4. 2 things:

    1) Your comments were relatively harmless to an establishment that is obviously on life support. Many NBA arenas last year were less crowded the the rodeo at Balado Park Near Tres Penos California. Yea thats a real place. Check it out. The league is trying to rebuild it’s image via various joint marketing ploys, but frankly I think the players/owners are clearly responsible for the sad state of the NBA.

    2) Is that you in those pictures under the “mavs time” blog??? You look like your standing in a hole. If your going to suite up and stand next to the players do yourself a favor and hire Earl Boykins. You look like a child, but then again you often act like one too.

    later.

    Comment by Patrick -

  5. I agree with you Mark, whoever set the opening night game on Election night was an idiot. Luckily I’d rather watch the Mavs play than watch any election or anything else that matter! I’m quite pleased with the defensive intensity shown thusfar and Devin Harris looks to be an NBA All-Rookie first teamer if he keeps it up defensively. I also like the enthusiasm Jason Terry has brought back to Dallas, reminds me of another #31 that I still wish we would have kept… other than that I like how Damp is such a presence in the lan that it makes the defense collapse and allows Dirk more attempts to shoot the perimeter shot.. Lets go to the Finals this year! We are due! Oh and Lets use DJ, Damp, aah hell even Bradley and booth and hack the S*** out of Duncan this year.. he can’t shoot foul shots and you know that his only move is that same ol’ boring turnaround bankshot… just let the team know that this is their year!!

    Comment by Ryan R -

  6. Some observations:

    After watching all the “Season Premiere” dbl headers (except for the ones that conflicted with the Mav games), I feel that the Mavs have executed better than any other team so far. Granted, it’s only been 2 games, but I’m truly excited about the direction that the team is headed in. Having been a Mavs fan since the beginning, this year’s team appears to be the best ever. The balance and the luxury of bringing JT & Stack off the bench is staggering to comprehend. I think that the young 3some (Josh, Marquis & Devin) are the best group of young guys in the league. There may be individual guys better, but not a better trio. It’s fantastic to see such a solid foundation for the future. Alan Henderson has been a very big surprise. If his back stays healthy, he can be a major contributor all season. I hope Mbenga continues to develop, and become the 2nd center (never really liked Bradley). I’ll say this. The Mavs are, hands down, the deepest team in the league.

    The rest of the division:

    San Antonio is gonna be very tough this year. With Barry popping 3s, and Nesterovic’s improved confidence and the continued development of Ginobli & Parker, they’ve gotta be the favorites.

    Minnesota basically stood pat this past offseason, and they’re an improving team. Getting Wally & Olowokandi & Troy Hudson healthy for this season really helps them. Of course, Garnett is a monster. Cassell is still a top-notch PG, and Sprewell is… well, Sprewell. With his recent oft-quoted remarks, he’s gonna be a distraction this year, and will probably poison the Wolves’ chance to win the division. What an ass.

    Houston made one of the biggest deals in the offseason, and I think that they improved the overall talent, but until they get a real PG, they’re going nowhere. Also, I question them starting Maurice Taylor (decent shooter, no rebounds or defense) over Juwan Howard. That’s probably a short-lived experiment.

    New Orleans is living a nightmare. Switched from the weak Eastern conference to the toughest division in the NBA can’t help their chances. Also, losing Mashburn for the year certainly hurts their offense. Baron Davis is now the Hornets’ version of Kobe. Dish the ball until they get behind, and then hog it the rest of the game. Sure, he scores a bunch, but he takes 25-30 shots a game. Summary: Lottery, here the Hornets come.

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Mr J.R. Ewing’s thoughtful comments. Since you said “Of course, I discount anything that happened in the 70’s because that was not real.”, then I guess that you’re not real, either, since you’re obviously a child of the very same 70’s.

    Oh yeah, when you said “It’s kind of amusing though somewhat debating with people who I know are so far out of shape, most likely bald and in their mid 40’s though.” I’m not sure what that meant, except to show that 40somethings have lived longer, and have had the experience to actually know what they’re talking about. I guess you shouldn’t engage in a battle of wits if you’re unarmed, boy.

    One more thing, Peyton Manning is NOT the best QB of all time. He’s not even the best QB this year. (see Daunte Culpepper). Have you ever heard of Johnny Unitas? Bart Starr? Sonny Jurgenesen? Fran Tarkenton? How about Dan Marino? Of course not. They haven’t been on MTV.

    Comment by KGOS-FM -

  7. This’ll be an exciting year. I don’t think it’s THE year, but I think the foundation might be there. GO MAVS!

    Comment by Austin mls -

  8. What’s great about the Mavs is how their rookies have all turned out good. That Devin Harris can win a starting spot over Jason Terry is impressive. And also, so many players are interchangable. Half the key players can switch positions if they want to.

    Comment by basketball -

  9. If you will kill for your country, you aren’t a Christian. Those who love their enemies won’t kill them.

    Comment by Brett -

  10. Good luck Mark. I prefer college basketball, but your team is the most fun to watch by far.

    Comment by Entertainment News -

  11. I guess I need to find a basketball team to follow this season. 20 years of following the Warriors lose has been too much. Since my parents both went to University of Michigan, I can root for any team without Chris Webber on it.

    Thanks for the national anthem photos. I am emailing those to someone I know serving in the NG. Hopefully it spreads around the different units and lets them know how much we appreciate their service and their sacrifice.

    Comment by PJ -

  12. I guess I need to find a basketball team to follow this season. 20 years of following the Warriors lose has been too much. Since my parents both went to University of Michigan, I can root for any team without Chris Webber on it.

    Thanks for the national anthem photos. I am emailing those to someone I know serving in the NG. Hopefully it spreads around the different units and lets them know how much we appreciate their service and their sacrifice.

    Comment by PJ -

  13. just want to tip my hat off again to mark cuban and let him know, like lat year, i got the NBA league pass just to watch Dallas, mffl and i have never been to dallas. just i like a team that develops all of it’s players, plays a fun style, and has character. it’s hard to root for ‘real life’ jerks, or team that sells idea of watching the other team come to town more than it’s own team, ala washington wizards has for over a decade.

    Comment by Anthony -

  14. JR, what are you talking about? Dirk is not PF material? Dirk is stronger this year and ready to take on anybody. He never disappoints and is my candidate for MVP. Unless you didn’t watch the olympics, or the USA vs Germany game, you must not have seen how the US team was getting handled. It wasn’t pretty for the US, inside or out of the paint.

    Mr. Cuban, you are definitely the best owner in the NBA. Keep up the great work and GO MAVS!

    And, by the way, JR, I’m not some 40 yr old bald guy, I’m a 22 yr old female that lives and breathes basketball.

    Comment by Amber Davidson -

  15. does anyone else thing that it’s kind of weird that dirk has his hand over his heart during the AMERICAN national anthem? is he pledging his heart to our country?

    Comment by Bob -

  16. Hi Mark,

    I have a conspiracy theory for you…….I wonder if NBA commissioner David Stern and the other NBA “powers to be” are Republicans? Perhaps that would explain having the NBA season’s opening night correspond with the Presidential election? With the Democratic push to get better voter turn out (i.e. young & african american voters), perhaps having the NBA tip-off on election night was more by design than coincidence?

    One more thought…….What is up with the Sacramento Kings? I live a 1/2 hour away from ARCO ARENA and I am a big King’s fan. Not so long ago, it seemed we (the Kings) were destined to win an NBA championship. Now it seems that the team is falling apart….After Vlade’s trade, Peja says that he wants to be traded…….Webber talks like he doesn’t want to be here anymore….(so a few fans booed him during his comeback last season….big deal). And what about the Magoof brothers? They talk in the media as if they are ready to pull out of Sacramento if the city doesn’t help pay for a new downtown arena. What gives? Sacramento fans are some of the best in the NBA….and they (we) deserve better. Just my two cents….Jim

    http://stores.ebay.com/outlawmusic

    Comment by James Parham Jr. -

  17. Additional factual points of note:
    Csonka gained 1,117 yards in 1972; Mercury Morris gained 1,000 and had a higher per-carry average and more TDs.

    And does the name John Riggins ring a bell?

    Comment by Bruce Castleberry -

  18. Let’s skip over the typos and usage errors and go straight to your ridiculous arguments.

    “Dirk is SF in a PF’s body. He’s not a consisitant back to the basket scorer and every good team in the NBA has one of those guys.”

    I think you’re going to have a difficult time saying that a seven-footer who has led the team in rebounds four straight years is a “small forward.” What we assume you meant, but were just unable to express, was that he has 3-type skills. I guess Dallas’ 60-win season two years ago was just a fluke. Idiot.

    “Dampier can’t score in the post and a foreigner never can.”

    Dampier *only* scores in the post. You sure as hell don’t want him taking shots outside of about 10 feet. And I noticed that you had no response to my mention of Ming or Sabonis as post scorers. That’s because you couldn’t have one. By the way, Akeem Olajuwon of NIGERIA was a pretty good inside force, wouldn’t you say? And what about your own past Pacer, Rik Smits?

    “Like I said all great teams have that guy. Duncan, Garnet, Shaq, Jermaine O’Neal, Wallace.”

    The T’Wolves are a “great team?” A team that prior to last year had NEVER won a playoff series? The Pacers? Don’t be such a homer. If having one good season makes you a “great” team, then you must admit the Mavericks are great based on 2002-03.

    “I think thats why every year in the past 5 years, except for Lebron, a PF or center is picked 1.”

    Let’s put the fact check to this.
    2004: Dwight Howard. Big man, high school player. TBA.
    2003: LeBron
    2002: Yao Ming (Hmmm…a foreigner. Guess they made a mistake taking him, since foreigners can’t score in the post.)
    2001: Kwame Brown. A 6-11 guy who thus far has averaged 7.8 ppg, 5.6 rpg. Yeah, *that’s* an impact player.
    2000: Kenyon Martin. A small forward playing power forward. You’re wrong again!

    But wait, there’s more!

    1999: Elton Brand…he’s 6-8. Not exactly a power forward.
    1998: Michael Olowakandi. A loser. No one wants him.
    1997: Duncan. No argument here, the best player in the game.
    1996: Iverson. Who’s shorter than me.
    1995: Joe Smith: Pretty much just a guy, this era’s Buck Williams.

    So in the last 10 years, half of the picks have gone for players at 4 or 5, and only two of them have been worth a hoot. I think you’re argument falls completely flat. Try again, and perhaps mix in some facts to match your blather.

    “How will the Lakers do this year without Shaq?”

    Gee, how would the Showtime Lakers have done without Kareem? Or the Rockets without Akeem? What a ridiculous argument. Shaq’s only one of the all-time greats. How did the Bulls do without Michael?

    “..the powerhouses over the last 5 seasons have been the Spurs( Duncan,) T’Wolves( Garnet), Lakers( Shaq), and the Kings( Weber when healthy and Divac a few years ago).”

    Again, the Wolves are hardly a “powerhouse” since they’ve won a big cup of JACK SQUAT. Ditto the Kings. Divac has been washed up for years, Webber is a 4, not a 5, and he’s pretty much like Garnett or Dirk in that he’s not a true inside player.

    “And as far as the foreigners. All I’m saying is they are all finess with good fundamentals and no power. They need someone else for the most part to create for them. Peja is a great example.”

    Peja is a great example, indeed. He can shoot over anyone, create his own shot. You really should quiet down, because it’s clear the more you say, the weaker your case becomes.

    “I like to say Peyton Manning is the best QB of all time.”

    Peyton Manning is a loser and will always be a loser. He’ll never win a Super Bowl, ever. He couldn’t carry Brett Favre’s jockstrap, and will never be as good as 20 other QBs I could name.

    So it’s clear you know nothing. Good day to you, sir.

    Comment by Bruce Castleberry -

  19. I said he’s not a true PF, he’s a small forward in a PF’s body. He’s not a back-to-the-basket post player, he likes to get out abd chuck 3’s all day. It’s kind of amusing though somewhat debating with people who I know are so far out of shape, most likely bald and in their mid 40’s though. I know my last comment was uncalled for, but i can’t help but laugh that some of you people actually think you know what’s going on.

    But I understand it though. If your hardcore Mavs fans, you often want to think your team is better than they really are. i never got caught up into that, but it is easy to do. Especially with the Pacers and Colts. Of which I am fans of. Hell, I like to say Peyton Manning is the best QB of all time. Of course, I discount anything that happened in the 70’s because that was not real. Especially the 72 Dolphins. Think about it, a team going undefeated with a leading rusher who is white. Try to do that today. Their are offensive lineman that are faster today than Czonka was then. I know this is off-topic, but….

    Comment by J.R. Ewing -

  20. anyone who thinks Dirk is average knows nothing about basketball, JR.

    Comment by paul -

  21. can anybody explain to me why the mavs v. kings game is not being showed on national tv tonight? i live in san marcos, but i’m from dallas, and i can’t believe that arguably the best rivalry in the league is not being shown in place of the nuggets v. lakers. its bad enough i have to watch the boring spurs games all year (or the van gundy rockets…yawn), but when an instant classic is only being shown locally, its frustrating. Mark, whats the deal? i’m not mad, but i’d rather see (and many other mavs fans here in central texas) mavs- kings than mavs-hornets (like tomarrow night).

    Comment by paul -

  22. I can’t wait to watch tonight’s game! Hopefully the wait in the polling lines won’t cut into game time but it’s being TiVo’d on two devices so unless it storms or something tonight I’m ready to go! This season is looking really good for the Mavericks… very interested to see how everybody works together this year… we’ll see.

    Comment by Justin Langhorst -

  23. Obviously Jordan is an exception and I said in todays game. Most likely how Lebron will be an exception in the future. How will the Lakers do this year without Shaq? What a coincidence in the supposed tough ass western conference that the powerhouses over the last 5 seasons have been the Spurs( Duncan,) T’Wolves( Garnet), Lakers( Shaq), and the Kings( Weber when healthy and Divac a few years ago).

    And as far as the foreigners. All I’m saying is they are all finess with good fundamentals and no power. They need someone else for the most part to create for them. Peja is a great example. last year people were acting like he was an MVP canidate, Puuuhlease. He’s a great spot-up shooter when Bibby penetrates. Yao is only talked about as much because he is 8’6″. Kinda reminds me of Shawn Bradley who was #2 overall pick based solely on his heighth alone. Anyway, when it comes to basketball and football, i’m always right. Live with it.

    Comment by J.R. -

  24. ahh the biggest day of the year tomarow and its not because of the election. oh yes it is time. it is time to see if Damp can play Nellyball (which i think he will do greatly); its time to see the rookie Devin Harris shine with his quality point D.; its time to see if the Mavs can win not just by scoreing 105 a game but by limiting the other team to 80. Oh yes my friends its time for win number 1 on the way to 60 and a playoff run once more.
    ~Chris

    Comment by Chris Havins -

  25. Mark!

    I am looking forward to going to watch the Big D…Dallas Maverick basketball game. Give me a ‘M’ for Mavericks!(and Mark, of course:) ).

    Comment by Tam -

  26. Mark,
    Regarding the National Athem, I agree with you and think it was a great moment. I’ve wondered why more players do not do it. I think it is a great example for the youth.

    It was especially interesting to see the players who were not citizens show respect. I thought some might object, but then again they are not saying the Pledge of Allegiance, just honoring the flag and country of the United States of America. I think it a very valid gesture, since they all make more money and play better competition here than probably in any other country.

    I think it speaks well of the team comaraderie and togetherness not to mention the leadership of Michael Finley and Avery Johnson. I think there is added emphasis because all participating, since I think some who are not Americans do not agree with our handling of Iraq. In fact if Nash were here I’m guessing it would not have happened. This is definitely a sign of the team bonding that is happening and I for one appreciate the togetherness, the patriotism and the respect shown by the foreign players…go Mavs.

    Comment by Scott -

  27. J.R., who was the big post player for the Michael Jordan Bulls? Or the early 90s Pistons? If guys like Duncan and Shaq grew on trees….c’mon, man. Kevin Garnett is anything but a dominating inside player, he’s the black Dirk is what he is.

    Your comment that “foreigners” can’t be dominant players is ludicrous. Dirk, Yao, Sabonis in his prime…and the international impact is growing each day.

    Methinks your cowboy hat is a coupla sizes too small…

    Comment by Bruce Castleberry -

  28. “Damp” as you call him can only get junk baskets. I remember when the Pacers drafted him, ouch!!! He’s had 1 good year and it just happened to be in a contract year, but you already know this anyway so I’m not going to say to much except Dirk is SF in a PF’s body. He’s not a consisitant back to the basket scorer and every good team in the NBA has one of those guys. He’s more comfortable chucking up 3’s. I’ll say this, I like Devin Harris. If he comes along, that would be what you were mssing, just the pro-type PF. Dampier can’t score in the post and a foreigner never can. Like I said all great teams have that guy. Duncan, Garnet, Shaq, Jermaine O’Neal, Wallace. I know there not easy to get, but thats what you need. I think thats why every year in the past 5 years, except for Lebron, a PF or center is picked 1.

    Comment by J.R. Ewing -

  29. I have been closely watching this team for the last 14 to 15 years. I have probably missed 5 to 6 games during that time span and I have to say this maybe the most excited I have been entering a new season. I feel we have the perfect mix of talent and depth and contrary to what the newspapers and critics are saying, I feel that we have a chance to be in the championship game THIS YEAR, barring no major injuries. Remember this come April and May.

    Comment by Rob C -

  30. I have been closely watching this team for the last 14 to 15 years. I have probably missed 5 to 6 games during that time span and I have to say this maybe the most excited I have been entering a new season. I feel we have the perfect mix of talent and depth and contrary to what the newspapers and critics are saying, I feel that we have a chance to be in the championship game THIS YEAR, barring no major injuries. Remember this come April and May.

    Comment by Rob C -

  31. DO you mean that we can get 9 tickets, 3 per game for the first three games, for $75?

    Comment by Dominic Massaro -

  32. Do you mean we can get 3 tickets to the first three games, meaning 9 tickets, for $75?

    Comment by Dominic Massaro -

  33. I have been itching for the start of the season all summer long, and it’s finally here. I’m so excited to see mostly what Daniels will do in his secnd season, and Dampier holding down the middle.

    Despite what the media has been saying about the Mavs, I feel that this is going to be a much better season than last year, and I honestly feel that we have a chance at a good playoff run too.

    I know you and Nellie have been blasted by the media, but don’t worry. Think of it this way…

    If we end up having a bad season, everyone already expects that, so it’s no big deal.

    If we end up having a great season, everyone will be shocked and back on the Mavs bandwagon.

    LOL

    Thanks again for your will to WIN! We as the long-time Mavs mass can’t thank you enough.

    MFFL

    Comment by Shelby Cobra -

  34. i’m pumped for this mavs season! i’ve been playing nba 2k5 like a mad man, have dirk averaging 60 points a game, and have the mavs cruising to an undefeated season. i don’t care who’s going to be the president… i’ve got my tickets for tomorrow!!!!

    Comment by thomas -

  35. It may take a while, but if not this year, and provided they don’t enact their annual wholesale changes in the offseason, these Mavs could be a serious threat in the hunt for the 05-06 title.

    The biggest challenges facing Dallas this season are rebuilding chemistry lost by the shuffle (primarily the loss of point guard Steve Nash and the addition of a legitimate big-body center, Erick Dampier) and navigating the minefield that is the NBA Western Conference. The first issue will take care of itself; Dallas will have a tougher time with the latter.

    The Mavericks won’t miss Nash. At times, his scoring and passing were electrifying and part of many victories; but at the same time, Nash failed Dallas constantly in big games, especially in the playoffs. It’s one thing to put up monster numbers against run-of-the-mill point guards along the regular season path; quite another when matched up against the likes of Mike Bibby and Tony Parker in the post-season. Nash rarely won those battles consistently, and as a consequence, those teams advanced past Dallas three times in the past four post-seasons.

    The Mavs will have some growing pains at the point this season as they hand the reigns over to rookie Devin Harris. But Harris has a pedigree that looks to be superior to that brought in by both Josh Howard and Marquis Daniels — two rookies last year who, by the end of the season, were regulars in the Dallas lineup when healthy.

    Change is good, but sometimes brings growing pains. These Mavs may start slowly. They should be judged by how they play in May rather than how they play in November and December.

    Another loss was Antawn Jamison. Jamison, the NBA’s best Sixth Man last season, was as close as the Mavs had to a “force” inside (exempting the erratic Danny Fortson).

    It will be a new look team this season. With Dampier in the middle, Dallas now has a chance to match up with Tim Duncan and Yao Ming. It’s certain that the Spurs should finish ahead of Dallas, and likely that the Rockets will with the addition of Tracy McGrady and continued development of Yao. Again, however, it’s what happens once the playoffs begin that matters.

    Dirk Nowitzki took a step back last season, partially because of the different “grab-and-shoot” lineup (Antoine Walker, anyone?) and lingering injuries from the 02-03 season. It may have been a blessing in disguise that the Mavs were eliminated early from last year’s playoffs; it gave Dirk a little longer to heal up. Anyone who watched him light up the U.S. Olympic team prior to the Athens games could tell that he had “it” again.

    With Nash gone and the humble Michael Finley (Rolando Blackman, anyone?) standing to the side (looking to hoist an 18-footer, probably), this is Dirk’s team. He appears healthy, and that bodes well for the Mavs. Dirk will almost certainly be among the league’s scoring leaders this season. Dampier’s presence means he no longer has to be as assertive as a rebounder, and should have a few more open lanes to the basket whenever Dampier puts his big ass on someone to set a pick. Consider also that Dirk will be matching up with “power” forwards of lesser height and athletic ability, and a lot less of a shot, and it adds up to a big year. It’s likely that Dirk can also use that quickness to draw fouls, and he’s a deadly FT shooter.

    Finley’s big concern needs to be taking good shots. A streaky shooter, when he is on he is almost unstoppable. But he’s also beginning to show has age a bit, so his role as a leader and a smart player will be even more important this season. Considering that two rookies and two second-year players are being expected to contribute significantly this season, it’s vitally important that Finley continue to show the leadership that has marked his time in Dallas.

    An X-factor is Jerry Stackhouse. Undeniably talented, Stackhouse has almost always been on lousy teams where he was expected to be the star. It hasn’t worked out that well for Stack, whose career has been uneven. In Dallas, he’s not going to have to be “the guy,” and perhaps that is a great role for him. The Minnesota Twins gave up on David Ortiz because he was a crappy fielder. In Boston, where he could be a DH and concentrate on hitting, he blossomed into a star. The analogy could apply to Stackhouse; if he picks his spots, and Don Nelson will play him in ways where he can succeed, Stackhouse could finally have found a home.

    San Antonio is San Antonio; the Nuggets and Rockets should be much improved. The Lakers will implode around Kobe Bryant’s fat head and Sacramento’s window is almost closed. Minnesota will again be a team that rolls over regular-season opponents and can’t get it done in the playoffs.

    Dallas is likely to finish in the middle of the Western pack and depending on the matchup should advance into the conference semis and with some breaks, make the final. Either way, it should be a fun ride and really build some anticipation for the 05-06 season.

    Comment by Bruce Castleberry -

  36. Maybe I just misread, but what is so special about people standing for the Anthem? Doesn’t that happen everywhere? Maybe just here in Utah I take it for granted.

    Comment by Jake -

  37. I placed a wager for $10 that Kerry would win the
    election. I cannot believe you can get action on something like this ….

    Can’t wait for Mav-time!

    Comment by Randy B -

  38. Mark,
    While I have nothing but the utmost respect for you as a person and owner of the Mavs, you still have a way to go to match the consistency and defensive play of the favorites to win the West and likely the championship, the San Antonio Spurs. As a longtime Spurs fan, I applaud you for annointing Avery Johnson as the heir apparent to Nellie and he will no doubt be a great presence. His knowledge of Spurs basketball and defensive principles can only help in your quest. The NBA GMs have spoken and predicted the Spurs to win their third title in the last 6 years. I certainly hope they are right, but that said, if the Spurs don’t come out of the West, I’ll be rooting for your Mavs as I admire your passion, the fan friendly atmosphere you’ve created and most of all your genuineness and being not afraid to tell it like it is.

    — RG

    Comment by Rich G. -

  39. I live in the D.C. area, so I’m used to sucky basketball. But I can’t believe you guys got Stack … if his Wizards career is any indicator, he’s going to say all the right things and then undermine the coaching staff and team chemistry the minute he doesn’t get his way. There’s a reason the guy has had a relatively mediocre career. Granted, D.C. is where talent goes to die, but Stack has the same pattern on every team … he talks nice until he doesn’t get something he wants, be it playing time, attention, recognition, whatever. I don’t know him personally but everything I’ve read about him makes him seem like a headcase and a bully. Maybe I’m wrong but I wouldn’t be surprised if Stack starts to seem like a big mistake by midseason. Hope you didn’t pay much for him.

    Comment by James King -

  40. Im sorry but how many titles has Billy Beane won? Oh thats right – zero. What he does is focus on irrelevant stats and when it comes time to sign great players, he lets them go.

    I think its time for fans to get over Nash. You do not overpay for a point guard who is past the peak of his career. See Jason Kidd. If Nash wanted to stay, he would have not taken the first big offer he received on the first day of free agency.

    There is a difference in paying a point guard, and paying a center as well. I have been saying for years this team will not reach the next level until you have a good big man. Did we overpay for Damp? No, we paid market value. This will be a good signing in the long run. And if you think we are stuck with this contract for years see Juwan Howard.

    This is going to be a great year! Now all we need is for every Mavs game to be in HD.😛

    Comment by Dan -

  41. “You can always recover from the player you didn’t sign. You may never recover from the player you signed at the wrong price.” This is a quote from Billy Beane in “Moenyball” about the fallacy of teams making bad moves because they think they HAVE to. The poster child of this quote is Erick Dampier, yes the Erick Dampier with creaky knees and an entire career of underachievement, whom you signed for $73 million over the next 7 years. You preach fiscally conservatism all summer long, citing the uncertainty of the future of the collective bargaining agreement and an unwillingness to throw big money at the 30+ crowd (forget about Steve Nash already?). Then you sign Dampier and set off the H-Bomb on all your sound reasoning. We both know the fool’s gold that is a player who puts up big numbers in their walk year. I understand you needed a center, but the need was not so dire that you needed to ruin the future flexibility of your franchise and marry yourself to a perenial dissapointment. If you did not want to be paying Steve Nash $10 mil when he is 34, then do you really want to be paying Dampier over $10 million when he is 37?

    Comment by Mark Cardinal -

  42. Thanks for the paragraph breaks, Mark. I had bailed on this the first time as it was just too difficult to read.

    Comment by Gary Petersen -

  43. The lack of a scoring big man has always hurt Dallas in my opinion.

    Dampier is a good addition and I believe will be a stepping stone.

    I still believe they need a better scoring big man, but there are only so many in the league and they are prized.

    Good addition though.

    Thanks for the indepth scouting report on the Mavs

    Patrick – Mark Cuban Fan For Life

    Comment by Patrick Muldoon -

  44. I’m so ready for the Mavs season! I went to the preseason game against the Spurs, and I have to say I was impressed. Although quite a few of the players were out because of injuries/sickness, I could tell this is going to be a great year. I can tell you Mark, the fans are as excited as you are. Lets Go Mavs!

    Comment by Emily -

  45. I tripped across these one day on the Mavs home page, linked from the top right corner of this blog and on the Training camp page. Click on each day at the bottom of the page for shots of the Mavs playing (day 19 is not loading at the moment). Here is the direct link:
    http://www.nba.com/mavericks/news/training_camp_2004.html
    Enjoy! Val

    Comment by Val -

  46. Mark,
    I love Mavs basketball!!!! Since the days of Rolando Blackman. I am writing to ask if you would look at my charity web site http://www.thetouchministry.com and add them to the list of donating when you get fined this year. I would like to be your giving hands for the community. You can email me at hiitscj@msn.com. I look forward to hearing from you. Go Mavericks!!!!
    Best regards,
    Cheryl

    Comment by Cheryl Jackson -

  47. I am ready for this year more than ever. I cannot wait to see Marquis Daniels involved for a full year like he was at the end of last year. I was so impressed with both him and Josh Howard last year. Yes, I will miss Steve Nash as a person. But yesterday is behind us and we will be better at guard this year. I was shocked at one particular play by Devin Harris last Thursday against the Queens in preseason. The play I am talking about is where he stole a ball on D and drove down the court full steam and attempted a tomahawk dunk over 2 Queens. He did not play as if he was a rookie. He showed an intense competitive drive. Although he missed that dunk (because he was fouled), he did not let the hard foul alter his aggressive play. He remained steadfast and determined to go 100%. Steve Nash, have fun in Pheonix, and we will miss you as a person, but not on the court. Also, regarding Dampier’s inside play, there is no room on this Blog site to comment enough on his presence (his 14 rebounds last Thursday!), and how different the Mavs offense looked as so many plays went through the center early and often.

    Can’t wait for the January game vs. Clippers at Staples in LA. Got my 17th row seats already. And the NBA league pass will enable us “Road Mavs” access to another great year.

    Mark, thank you again. Your dedication to success for this organization has made this 25-year Mavs die-hard proud.

    Now, lets go out and grab that top seed.

    Comment by greg -

  48. I’m excited for you and your Mavs. The team looks good and ‘Stacked’. I first started watching the Mavs when Steve Nash was acquired. Even though Steve isn’t there anymore, the Mavs are still one of my favourites. Not only am I excited about your team, I’m looking forward to basketball. The scenery has changed so much in this past offseason. Players are everywhere else. Here in Canada, I think you’re going to find more and more Canadians watching with the NHL lockout and all. I’m looking forward to some ball. Cheers!

    Comment by nelly -

  49. We will win the division.

    I don’t care what idiots like SAS say, (his initials are an anagram for his real name) Damp was a great deal and Big D is going to have some real D this year… hopefully big Dirty has gotten even better at it this season.

    Spurs are our only real threat in the West. And it’s mostly psychological.

    Comment by pooof -

  50. With Nash gone and the humble Michael Finley (Rolando Blackman, anyone?) standing to the side (looking to hoist an 18-footer, probably), this is Dirk’s team. He appears healthy, and that bodes well for the Mavs. Dirk will almost certainly be among the league’s scoring leaders this season. Dampier’s presence means he no longer has to be as assertive as a rebounder, and should have a few more open lanes to the basket whenever Dampier puts his big ass on someone to set a pick.

    Comment by runescape money -

  51. He’s not a consisitant back to the basket scorer and every good team in the NBA has one of those guys. He’s more comfortable chucking up 3’s. I’ll say this, I like Devin Harris. If he comes along, that would be what you were mssing, just the pro-type PF. Dampier can’t score in the post and a foreigner never can. Like I said all great teams have that guy. Duncan, Garnet, Shaq, Jermaine O’Neal, Wallace. I know there not easy to get, but thats what you need.

    Comment by wow powerleveling -

  52. The mavs are one of the most fun teams in the league to watch because, aside from the center spot, every player at every position is quick, fast, athletic, versatile and good at basketball. Very few teams can say that

    Comment by nba rumors -

  53. I am thrilled to see the players with their hands over their hearts before the game. This single event moves the Mavs up a ton in my book.

    I don’t think I have ever seen it before, and I have thought to myself many times while watching sporting events “If I were their owner… they would have their hands over their hearts, or wouldn’t be playing….”

    Thanks to Finley!

    Comment by biffhero -

  54. Even though I’m not a Mavs fan I love wathing your team. It seems like it’s been diffucult to find the right point guard for the Mavs. I was wondering what you think Armstrong will bring to the Mavs. I thought Jason Terry was going to get at least 30 minutes a game, but Nelson hasn’t been using him much. Why is that?

    Comment by Aman -

  55. Mark,

    You are a definite genius both personally and in business. I, like you, love to see a self-loving ass like Trump go down. You, on the other hand, who has at minimum twice the wealth of Trump doesn’t flaunt it and that is comendable. I am a lowly economics and computerized accounting teacher in Canada. If you ever need a 160 IQ 32 year old Canadian on your business team please call. I am very interested in gaming as an investment (I do it mysalf quite well) and the HD TV medium. I don’t know if you read all these comments yourself, but judging by your character I bet you do. I would love to hear from you. In a way you are like an idol to me and maybe someday a mentor. I have followed your rise to wealth and find the story fascinating. This takes a lot for me to say this stuff because anyone who knows me knows I am not an ass-kisser. If you do read this at least I am honoured. If you contact me I will be very honoured. My e-mail is mmackay@mountaincable.net . Good luck in your future endevours, not that you need it, and go Mavs.

    Rich

    Comment by Rich MacKay -

  56. It’s about time that someone had a gaming related hedge fund. There are many gaming companies that are terrific buys right now. Try Sands Regent (NASDAQ: SNDS). It has a P/E of 9, while most gaming companies have PE’s of 30 or higher. Also check out Monarch Resort & Casino (NASDAQ: MCRI). These small gaming companies are outstanding investments. A gaming hedge fund will search out these undervalued stock picks.

    Comment by Kevin Weakland -

  57. Kind of late post on this blog subject (I wanted to post on the correct subject), but I have a new nickname for the Mavs Trio of Howard, Daniels and Nowitski:

    H – D – “Net”

    HDNet…

    Comment by greg -

  58. Experiencing Mavs games live, free online.
    I accidentally discovered this, if you click on the Mavs home page (link in top right corner or at http://www.nba.com/mavericks ) on a game day at a time when a game is on, you can click on a link below a game announcement, I think it said HTML or livestats or something(s), one of the links takes you to a free page (so far anyways) that refreshes every 2 minutes and you see the team scores change and a real time action list generated of what is happening live and the changing box scores. You dont have to even be in the same country or time zone, just log on when their game is on at the game location, and figure out the time difference. I thought this was really nifty. You can be working on something else, and you can use the alt tab keys to jump between your work and the game to see how they are doing. Hmm, now if I had a sound recording of game action for the background….Enjoy, I have to get “back to the game now”. (If you cant make it in time for the game, they post the final scores on the web site usually on game night not long after the game is over so you don’t need to wait till the next day to know the score).

    Comment by Val -

  59. Good luck this season. I’ll be rootin’ for ya!

    Comment by Maggie -

  60. Champing at the bit
    If someone is eager or anxious to do something, they are said to be champing at the bit, (not chomping at the bit. nor chomping on the bit).
    CHAMPING: Repetitious, strong opening and closing action of the mouth which produces sounds when the teeth hit together. Champing in swine may be a threat signal, but also is performed by boars during courtship and mating. Definition from Hurnik et al., 1995.
    – The Encyclopedia of Farm Animal Behavior

    Comment by Luke Peterman -

  61. first off…i am an indiana pacer fan born and raised, but i really love the moves have made the dallas team (except for those shiny grey unis). i find some irony in the name of your team and your decisions as an owner. maverick hits the nail on the head and as a fellow alum of I.U. you do us all proud…also, one thing on devon harris…people speak on livingston being the best player in the draft potentially…i think it will be harris by far he has great smile, intelligence, intensity, leadership and savy…he reminds me of zeke, but with big hands.

    Comment by stephen -

  62. insert a few paragraphs next time mark.

    be sure to get on damp. make sure he isnt too lazy out there.

    Comment by kevin -

Comments are closed.