The Dallas Mavericks played a basketball game tonight! That in itself is a win. But even better, the Mavericks actually won that game! The Mavs beat the Los Angeles Lakers in their first scrimmage before the NBA season restart.
The 108-104 victory is a small step. I get that. But the Mavericks actually didn’t look as rusty as I thought they would.
They shot 54% as a team and scored 108 points in 40 minutes. Against the best team in the Western Conference! Ok, so LeBron James only played 15 minutes and the Lakers’ leading scorers were JaVale McGee and Quinn Cook. But I’m enjoying this win!
Here some things I noticed during the game and some questions that came up.
1. Is tanned Luka the best Luka?
The entire Mavericks squad came out a little more tanned than the last time we saw them. Luka Doncic was so much more tanned that I almost didn’t recognize him on the court.
Is it a coincidence that the game Luka debuts his tanned look, he also makes 62% of his field goals and 33% of his 3-point attempts, both above his career average? I think not!
He had 14 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists in just 16 minutes.
The starters didn’t play many minutes in this scrimmage and it was a shortened game anyway.
I’m thinking the tanned look works for these guys. They’ve clearly been getting some Vitamin D and spending quality time together in the sun.
2. Have the Mavs finally found their third star?
Ok, so, someone get a fire extinguisher for Seth Curry. The best Curry was on fire tonight. Seth scored 23 points in just 15 minutes and was 6-6 on 3-pointers.
A long-standing question throughout the season was, Who is the Maverick’s third star or third-best player? It was a different player in each game.
3. Do the Mavericks have enough depth without Jalen Brunson and Courtney Lee?
We got our first look at the Mavericks without two key players – Jalen Brunson and Courtney Lee. The Mavericks will be without both for the remainder of the season.
Jalen Brunson was averaging 18 minutes a game and Courtney Lee was averaging 14 minutes a game. Both filled in as serviceable starters at different points in the season.
This game showed the depth the Lakers have. At times, the Mavs’ bench struggled. Will the Mavericks have enough depth to compete in the Playoffs?
4. Are we gonna do favorable foul calls again?
The world may have changed, but there’s some things that never do. Death, taxes, and the Lakers getting favorable foul calls.
There were several calls in this game favoring the Lakers that were totally ridiculous. I mean, he-didn’t-even-touch-him ridiculous.
I don’t know why I thought this wouldn’t be a problem with the season restart. Apparently, it still is.
Those are four questions I have. What was the highlight of the game for you? The Dallas Mavericks’ next scrimmage is July 26th versus the Indiana Pacers at 3 p.m.. What does Tanned Luka have in store for us?