Running up 140 points against the Lakers is nice. Swamping the Sixers by 52 helps beef your stats. And waltzing over the Jazz, Timberwolves, Hornets and Bucks will help you to a 16-6 record.
But until you beat the elite, you won’t be respected as a legit championship contender. The Mavs have yet to do it this season. But this week they get their chance.
No way around it, the Mavs have beat up the weak sisters and been bullied by the big brothers. They are 0-4 against the top eight teams in the brutally tough Western Conference, with losses to the Spurs, Blazers, Rockets and Suns. Against the rest of the league they are an astounding 16-2.
That can – and needs to – change this week. The Mavs play at the 16-4 Memphis Grizzlies tonight and host the 17-2 Golden State Warriors Saturday night. They’ve won at Toronto and Washington and Chicago, but to validate their impressive early-season start the Mavs need to make a statement.
Losing at home to the Pacers was their sorry loss. Beating the Timberwolves or Warriors would be their signature win.
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 currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.