As Jon Bon Jovi sings, “I’m going down in a blaze of glory,” who between the Blazers and the Mavs can say that at Saturday’s last game of the night?
Entering the second full month of the NBA 2013-14 season and looking at the current standings, I initially thought that the Portland Trail Blazers would impose a threat to the Dallas Mavericks. The Mavs will coast out to the West and trail up to Portland’s Moda Center for Dallas’ second consecutive away game out of four against Western Conference contenders.
Before tipoff, the 17-3 Trail Blazers top the West and its Northwest Division while the 12-8 Mavericks sit at the No. 6 spot in the conference and at No. 3 in the Southwest Division below the other two Texas teams, the 15-3 San Antonio Spurs and the 14-7 Houston Rockets. These three ball clubs are the ones that I think would bring the most challenges for Dallas in December.
While struggling through the last week of November, the Mavs started off this month right. First, they beat the Charlotte Bobcats at home on Tuesday. Then they started their road trip with the New Orleans Pelicans, who they defeated on Wednesday.
I would like to point out that one weapon that the Blazers do not have that the Mavs have is power forward, All-Star, and 14th leading scorer of all-time Dirk Nowitzki. However, he needs his teammates to step up and help Dallas reach victory against Portland, who has many young guys on the roster and only two seasoned members with double-digit year pro experience in their first year as Blazers: free agent guards Earl Watson with 12 and Mo Williams with 10. Neither of those two players are in the starting lineup, like Nowitzki and his Tipoff Trio teammate, small forward Shawn Marion, who both have over one and a half decades under their belt.