The Dallas Mavericks(2-1) defeated the Houston Rockets(1-3) 116-106 in their home opener on Tuesday night. Dallas trailed 60-57 at halftime but took a three-point lead into the fourth before pulling away.
Here’s the great, Not so Great, and the Bottom Line of the Mavs’ win over the Rockets.
The Great for the Dallas Mavericks:
-Luka Doncic had 26 points to go with a season-high 14 rebounds and seven assists. Doncic also had a game-high +15 rating.
-Jalen Brunson recorded a double-double with 11 points and a career-high-tying 11 assists off the Mavericks’ bench. This was the seventh double-double of his career.
-Boban Marjanović came off the bench and recorded 11 points and four rebounds in only nine minutes of action.
Interesting stat: Marjanović moved in a tie (Freddie Crawford) for third place all-time for the most times scoring 10-or-more points when on the court for under 11 minutes.
-Tim Hardaway Jr. (6-12 FG) and Reggie Bullock (6-11 FG, 4-7 3FG) each added 16 points for the Mavericks tonight.
-All 15 players got minutes tonight for the Mavericks, which was the plan from the start for Dallas. After the game, Jason Kidd explained why he went 15 deep against Houston.
“Yes (the plan was to play everyone),” he said. “The matrix was in a twist, but we figured it out. It’s a really cool thing because we talk about team sports and to have all 15 play — and they knew that they were playing. I give them credit for not telling you guys. It’s really cool thing in this league opening night here. The floor has all of the past players, and for those (current) players to be able to touch the floor with their names out there was really cool.”
Also, Kidd revealed that Dallas has a leadership council, and according to Kidd, it was the decision of the leadership council to play all 15 guys. However, Kidd did not reveal who was a part of the council.
“We’ll let the council stay the council,” Kidd said. “It’s a communication thing. Talking to those three guys before, they wanted to do it. It’s a cool thing because we always talk about 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 as part of the team, and they tend to not get to play. They come to work every day just like the starters or the rotation guys, and I think this just shows what kind of character, what kind of guys we have in that locker room, which is really, really cool.”
Doncic added: “I think we all agree. We have 15 guys. They are able to play. I think it shows that we trust them, and I think it was a great idea. I think all 15 players, they can play, and we got the win, so that’s what matters.”
-Bench Points: It’s rare for a team to play the whole roster in a reasonably close game. However, the Mavericks did get a season-high 52 points from their bench. By comparison, Dallas only had 52+ bench points on five occasions last season.
The Not so great for the Mavericks:
Kristaps Porzingis left the game for Dallas in the third quarter with a lower back injury. Any injury to Porzingis is not good, and hopefully, it’s not something that Dallas will have to worry about going forward.
This is a game Dallas should win, but last season the Mavericks lost at home to Houston and other bad teams, so it’s good to see them get a victory over the Rockets.
The Mavericks get back at it on Thursday night when they host the San Antonio Spurs.
Best of the rest:
Houston’s Christian Wood had 16 points and a game-high 17 rebounds
Eric Gordon led the Rockets with 22 points off the bench.