After closing out the Phoenix Suns on Sunday, the Golden State Warriors continued their hot streak. The Dubs are 9-2 in their last 11 games and will be hosting the Dallas Mavericks, who are right on the Warriors’ heels in the race for superior postseason position. So far this season, the two games between these two teams have been extremely competitive and decided by no more than four points.
Frontcourt: The most potent threat of the Mavericks is obviously Dirk Nowitzki, who can hurt any team in a major way, any day of the week. Samuel Dalembert doesn’t get many looks offensively and is mostly in the starting lineup because Dallas lacks a better center. Shawn Marion is a ferocious defender and can generally be relied upon to rebound and score in double-digits.
Backcourt: Jose Calderon is a great unselfish playmaker and a terrific fit next to Monta Ellis offensively. Calderon can run a pick-and-roll offense but is also willing to play off the ball and simply space the floor when Ellis takes over the ball-handling duties.
Keys to Warriors Victory:
The Warriors have won four straight even though Stephen Curry hasn’t reached 20 points in any of those games. Obviously, two of those games were against the Atlanta Hawks and the Boston Celtics, but it’s still nice to see the Warriors relying less on Curry and more on the bench and other starters. Whether or not that trend continues remains to be seen, but the more help Curry gets the better.
Limit the two-man game
Ellis and Nowitzki run a pretty mean two-man game, which is very hard to deal with defensively. The pick-and-pop threat of Dirk and the off-the-dribble game of Ellis are a perfect match and Golden State will have to find a way to limit the top two scorers of the Mavs.
Dallas Mavericks (38-27) vs. Golden State Warriors (40-24)
7:30 PM PST, March 11, 2014
ORACLE Arena, Oakland, CA
TV: CSN Bay Area
Radio: KNBR 680 AM
Mavericks Projected Starting Line-up
PG: Jose Calderon
SG: Monta Ellis
SF: Shawn Marion
PF: Dirk Nowitzki
C: Samuel Dalembert
Key Reserves: G Vince Carter G Devin Harris