Saturday, December 29, 2007

Early to rise: Mavs clip Hawks

Waking up wasn’t an issue Saturday morning. Seizing the day and the game, the Mavericks shot down Atlanta 97-84 before a matinee crowd of 20,338 at American Airlines Center.

For a team ailing in several areas, the Mavs (20-11) helped themselves to brunch that Avery Johnson had to love. His team shot it, rebounded it, scored inside and defended.

“That team reminded me of a team that I coached here before,” Johnson said.

Erick Dampier set the tone with a two-handed dunk to open the game. Devin Harris followed with a driving layup, another sign that the Mavs were serious about getting to the basket.

The jumper was falling, too. Josh Howard and Dirk Nowitzki connected on consecutive 3-pointers on the next two possessions. The game was barely two minutes old and Dallas was up 12-0. The rout was on.

“I liked the focus early in the game,” Johnson said. “Our defense was really good early on. Sometimes it’s hard for me to give out compliments about our defense.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

“That team reminded me of a team that I coached here before,” Johnson said.

I love this comment by Avery. You can almost hear the longing in his voice for that team that used to have more of a swagger and played with more heart.

Obviously, I'm still a mavs fan or else I wouldn't be leaving comments all over this blog, but like Avery, I look forward to seeing this team begin to resemble the team we say play here before.