Here’s the sobering truth: The Mavs over-achieved in this season and in this playoff series.
And yet, basketball has again ended before the calendar flips to May.
Like the Cowboys with Tony Romo and Jason Witten, you can’t help but have the feeling that the Mavericks are wasting precious, productive years from Dirk Nowitzki and Rick Carlisle.
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Despite a flawed roster partly because of the DeAndre Jordan free-agent switcheroo, the Mavs maxed out and somehow made the playoffs. Then, overmatched and unfathomably injured, they maxed out again in winning a game in their playoff series against the Thunder.
“We battled hard,” Nowitzki said after Monday night’s season-ending 118-104 loss in Game 5 in Oklahoma City. “We battled unbelievably hard even to get to the sixth seed, winning six in-a-row when everybody thought we were dead. So I’m proud of the guys. We gave it all we had.”
Your team reaches its potential and you’re supposed to feel good about it. Then why this morning am I again so gutted?
I guess this season should feel like a success. But for an organization that won a championship in 2011 and hasn’t won a post-season series since, it sure feels like another failure.
Not in the playing. But more in the preparation. And, yes, I’m talking about the front office.
Carlisle is one of the NBA’s best coaches. Nowitzki is a Hall of Famer that fights and scraps and can still play 40 minutes and put up 24 points against younger, more athletic defenders. But they need help. And truth is they’re just not getting it.
Truth is the Mavs don’t need their players to play better. They need better players.
To that end let’s proud of this team, yet mad at this organization.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.