Preview Mavericks Vs Nuggets February 8th 2012

February 8th, 2012

Dallas Mavericks vs. Denver Nuggets
NBA / Western Conference

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012
Pepsi Center, Denver, CO @ 9:00 PM EST

Analysis of the Dallas Mavericks
The defending champions are getting off to a bit of a rough start this year, beginning 14-11 with a couple of tough three game loss streaks. However, their stellar defense and veteran leadership have still propelled them to 8th place in the Western Conference, and most of the losses they have suffered have come against good teams (the Heat, Thunder, Pacers, & Clippers to name a few). Not exactly the quick start that happened last season, but nothing that fans should be overly worried about.

Analysis of the Denver Nuggets
The Nuggets were defined last year by the trading of Carmelo Anthony to New York, receiving a couple great pieces and draft picks in return. The trade was thought to help make New York a powerhouse squad but has in fact made the Nuggets, 15-10 on the year, a more dangerous opponent. An extremely spread out team, 6 players currently average double figures in points per game on the highest scoring ball club in the NBA this year.

Key Players
Dallas Mavericks: Jason Terry
With PG Jason Kidd potentially out, the Mavericks will be relying on both Terry and Nowitski to carry their team through the much tougher Western Conference games. Nowitski isn’t a question though; he’ll put up 20-8 every night. The question is whether or not Terry will be able to step up in Kidd’s absence.

Denver Nuggets: Ty Lawson
Though nursing a hurt ankle PG Ty Lawson should play, and he must if the Nuggets want to win this game. Leading scorer Danilo Gallinari is out for upwards of a month with a severe ankle sprain and Lawson must play well to try and make up for that loss. As well, the lack of Jason Kidd on the other side of the ball should allow for Lawson to have a much better matchup on the court. He has to take advantage.

Key Statistics
Points per game:
Denver scores the most in the league, averaging 104 points scored each time out. Dallas is one of the best defensive teams in the NBA though, only allowing about 90 points every night. This game will come down to the unstoppable force (Denver’s offense) versus an immoveable object (Dallas’s defense); whichever team lets up will lose.

The Nuggets have been a bit of a surprise this year and the Mavericks a bit of a disappointment. That said, it will still be a well-played game. Injuries are hurting both teams badly, but ultimately I think that Denver’s depth will be able to overcome their injury bug while Dallas will end up not being able to put it together defensively, decisively losing a tough road matchup.

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Prediction = Denver Nuggets: 98 – Dallas Mavericks: 78