It wasn’t long ago when the Dallas Mavericks were in the thick of things with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Utah Jazz in the fight for the eighth and final seed in the Western Conference. Many people even believed this team had a chance to emerge out of those three teams because of their 12-year streak of appearances in the NBA Playoffs, despite their inconsistent season.
After a loss on national television to the Lakers, though, the wheels seem to come off for Dallas. Now, their record is below .500 and they are two and a half games behind the Lakers, who currently hold the eight-seed with just five games remaining in the regular season. That alone stacks the deck against them.
The Mavericks are also dealing with inconsistent and poor play out of some of their key players. O.J. Mayo has appeared very passive over the past week or so and has shot the ball quite inefficiently over that time. Vince Carter has been too aggressive and has been taking too many poor shots, which has obviously affected his efficiency.
If those weren’t enough troubles for Dallas, Elton Brand has missed the last four games for the Mavericks because of a calf injury. Dirk Nowitzki has also been hobbled over the last couple of games because of a foot injury that he suffered in their last game. Not only are key players delivering poor performances, but other key players have been bitten by the injury bug.
Though it’s still statistically possible for the Mavericks to make the playoffs, it doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen. With all the things that they have working against them at the moment, the odds really look like they are insurmountable. Rest in peace to Dallas’ playoff hopes and streak of playoff appearances; you had a good run.