After winning the NBA Championship in 2011 and deciding not to put back together the same team they had for that title run and then get sweep the following season by the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round of the post-season the question remains; Who are the Dallas Mavericks? This year nobody including Mavs Nation knows what to expect from the Dallas Mavericks this season. Will the Mavs even make the post-season? Who do the Mavs have besides Dirk Nowitzki that can carry this team back into the NBA Finals?
The answer to those questions is right under our nose. The Mavs will return to the post-season. The Mavs do have someone that can carry this team besides Dirk Nowitzki. Actually they have more than one. People will not see it right away, but they will as the season progresses.
People will see the Mavs secret weapon and that’s the combination of O.J. Mayo and Rodrigue Beaubois. During the four practices that the Mavs have had thus far, the chemistry between Mayo and Beaubois has been great. It seems like a bond between the two is growing and it will show on the court.
For the past few years it has been about “Freeing Roddy B,” but Beaubois has not lived up to his full potential. With the injuries holding him back and having games where he only shows up one every other month this year may be a little different. With the new acquisition of Mayo and the new bond that him and Beaubois are building and Coach Rick Carlisle has noticed that during the practices.
“They are similar in age in experience and they have a mutual respect for each other,” Carlisle said, “they both are working hard at it. That kind of spirit is going to help those two guys and help our team.”
Carlisle still sees a lot of potential in Beaubois and he’s going to continue to use him. However, it all depends on how Roddy plays. He is going to have to build up that consistency, so that Coach Carlisle can help him build up to his potential. The Mavs are not going to keep playing him if he does not show up game after game. Carlisle sees the potential.
The same goes with Mayo. He knows that in the past few years his stats have gone down a little. The first two years he was with the Memphis Grizzlies he averaged 18 points a game and that went down to 12 points a game in his last two years in Memphis. However, the main reason for his decline is most likely the acquisition of Zach Randolph that the Grizzlies did a few years ago.
“When you acquire Zach Randolph everybody stats are going to go down a little bit,” Rick Carlisle said.
The Mavericks expect Mayo to play like he did during his first two years in the league. They are going to expect 18 plus points a game. They are going to expect that energy that Mayo had when he was with Memphis and having the combination of Mayo and Roddy the Mavericks could have two guards who can control the tempo of the game and make other teams play Mavericks Basketball instead of the Mavs playing their opponents game.
I expect to see the two forcing the other team to clog the middle while one of them is out behind the arc and the other way around. If both Mayo and Roddy perfects their bond on the court then the Mavericks will be hard to beat especially in the transition game.
Nowitzki will still be the main player that the Mavericks will go to, but watch the games this year. It’s going to change a little. Carlisle knows that Nowitzki will most likely retire in the next few years and you will see Carlisle go to his younger players more and that includes Mayo and Beaubois. Mayo’s stats will go up this year. Roddy’s stats will go up this year. There’s not question about it, however with the history of Beaubois with his injuries it could hurt him in the near future if he wants to stay here in Dallas. That’s why I believe that having Mayo on this team and the bond that him and Beaubois are building will help both of them to make it to that next level in a basketball player’s career.
This will be the final year of “Freeing Roddy B” chants. If it’s because of him falling back still or because he has finally lived up to his potential either way the chants will stop this year I can promise you that. I have had my doubts with both Mayo and Roddy, but watching them together and building that chemistry I believe now that this will be a breakout season for both Mayo and Beaubois.