Western Conference 1st Round Matchup: Mavs vs. Blazers

Posted by By at 15 April, at 02 : 09 AM Print

 

After a long season of 82 games filled with highs and lows, the Dallas Mavericks have locked in on 3rd seed, facing the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round.

Advancing to the second round is something the Mavs nor the Blazers are too familiar with. Dallas has lost in the first round in 3 of the past 4 seasons while the Blazers haven’t moved on to the second round since 2000. The last time these two teams met in the postseason was in 02-03, when Dallas led the series 3-0 before Portland tied it at 3-3, eventually losing to the Mavs in game 7.

Many teams in the west hoped to play -or at least wouldn’t mind playing- the Mavs in the first round, primarily due to their lack of success in the past. Carlisle mentioned how the fact that everyone keeps referring to Dallas as “the same old Mavs” is a good thing because they have the advantage of coming out and surprising each team they face.

Chandler and the rest of the Dallas defense will have to be focused and centered around stopping LaMarcus Aldridge, who has averaged 27.8 points and 9 rebounds against the Mavs this season. Dallas also has to keep their eyes out for former All-Stars, Brandon Roy and Gerald Wallace.

Dallas and Portland split the season series 2-2, (both wins from each team coming from their own home-court) with all four games between the two teams decided by single digits.

Lets look back at these match-ups in the regular season:

Game 1: 12/15- Mavs win 103-98
Dirk was the reason for this Mavs win as he had 12 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter. Caron led the Mavs with 23 points, making it six Mavericks to score in double figures. LaMarcus Aldridge had a double-double with 25 points and 10 rebounds. Portland scored just 14 points in the first quarter, missing their last 10 shots in the first which led to a Dallas 9-2 run. The Mavs also finished the second quarter on a 17-6 run. They outscored Portland 12-7 in the last 3 minutes of the game to get the win. Turnovers seemed to be an issue for the Mavs in this game.

Game 2: 1/4- Mavs win 84-81
This was the fifth game Dirk missed due to his knee injury. Despite Dirk’s absense, Dallas was still able to record the win as Chandler had his sixth double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds while Stevenson and Terry added 18 points each. LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points and 10 rebounds while Marcus Camby had 10 points and 20 rebounds. The Mavericks were down in the first but went on an 18-8 run to take the lead at the end of the quarter. The game was found to be tied like the last at one point before the Mavs took the lead going into the half. This time, the Blazers went on a 14-4 run to come back. Despite their spurt, the Mavs answered with a run of their own, 12-4, to get the win. This wasn’t an easy win for Dallas as the lead changed 11 times.

Game 3: 3/15- Blazers win 104-101
Peja and Haywood both sat out this game. Dirk had a double-double in this game with 28 points and 11 rebounds. Marion had 18 points while Roddy added 16. Aldridge had 30 points and 8 rebounds while Roy scored 21 points. Despite making their first 11 shots, they led by only 3 points after the first. Portland was down until the third quarter when they went on a 8-0 run to take the lead. They managed to keep their lead the rest of the game and outscored Dallas in second chance points, 18-4, and 48-36 in the paint.

Game 4: 4/3- Blazers win 104-96
Tyson Chandler sat out this game with a sore lower back. It was the final game of the Mavs’ longest road trip of the season. Marion scored 19 points while Dirk and Roddy had 18 and 16 points. Six Blazers scored in double figures. Portland led 61-46 at the half and led by as much as 20 points in the midst of the third. Trailing 95-74 four minutes into the fourth, the Mavs went on a 8-0 run at the end to cut their deficit to 95-82. The Blazers answered with a 7-0 run of their own and held onto the lead. Portland stole the ball 10 times and also outscored Dallas 50-38 in the paint.

Looking at the big picture, Dallas has won 21 of the last 28 games against the Blazers, but five of those Dallas losses have been in the last eight games. All time, the Mavs are just 18-46 in Portland, as they constantly struggle on the road against them. At home, the Mavs have won 19 of the last 22 games vs Portland. Their season series split of 2-2 proves this, as each of the teams wins were on their own court.

Portland big man, LaMarcus Aldridge, is definitely someone the Mavs need to look out for. As you can see in their previous match-ups, Aldridge scored the game-high almost every time. With fast aging on Dallas’ roster and Portland being a relatively young team, there are not many Mavs who can quickly drive to the basket; they are known for their perimeter shooting. This will be an issue in this series as in previous games, Portland took advantage of this and outscored Dallas in the paint almost every time.

Also, each game was close, being decided by 8 points or less. Throughout each game, both teams were at a constant battle for the lead, as each team went on runs each quarter to change it up. Because of this, I don’t think this match-up will be relatively easy for either team nor do I think any of the games will have a final score with a big difference.

The schedule for the first-round series between the Blazers and Mavericks is as follows:

Game 1- Sat April 16 Portland at Dallas 9:30pm ET on ESPN
Game 2- Tue April 19 Portland at Dallas 9:30pm ET on TNT
Game 3- Thu April 21 Dallas at Portland 10:30pm ET on TNT
Game 4- Sat April 23 Dallas at Portland 5:00pm ET on TNT
Game 5 * Mon April 25 Portland at Dallas TBD
Game 6 * Thu April 28 Dallas at Portland TBD
Game 7 * Sat April 30 Portland at Dallas TBD

Shooting forwards, Dirk Nowitzki and LaMarcus Aldridge
Jonathan Ferrey/NBAE/Getty Images

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4 Comments

  1. solo, 7 years ago Reply

    This write up is DOPE!

  2. DougieD, 7 years ago Reply

    The Mavs are in tough for this one…Dont be surprised if Portland pulls of the upset…However if the Mavs beat them as they should..they can use this momentum to carry them hopfully to the Conference Finals !!!!

  3. Roger, 7 years ago Reply

    Mavs are in a do or die situation. If they lose this series, Dirk is gone. They have too many question marks after this yera is done, so look for them to push hard this series.

  4. StinkyPinky, 7 years ago Reply

    Love the Mavs blog…GO MAVS GO BABY !!!!!


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