Inside Report: Playoff Practice Report (05/03/11)
Inside Report: Playoff Practice Report (05/03/11)
Earl K. Sneed reports from the Mavericks' Tuesday practice, as the team prepares to go back into the Staples Center looking for a 2-0 series lead on the two-time defending champion Lakers.
LOS ANGELES — The Mavericks are not satisfied with simply holding a 1-0 lead in their second-round series with the back-to-back champion Los Angeles Lakers. In fact, the Mavs want more.
After overcoming a 16-point deficit in the second half on Monday night before outfighting the Lakers to a 96-94 win, the Mavericks returned to the court at the Los Angeles Clippers' practice facility on Tuesday concentrating on avoiding the natural letdown that comes after stealing the home-court advantage following a Game 1 victory.
The team also looked to correct what caused the large disadvantage to begin with, after a careless foul by sixth man Jason Terry on Lamar Odom's 60-foot heave and an untimely technical foul on Dirk Nowitzki spawned a nine-point halftime deficit before three straight turnovers to start the third quarter led to a 7-0 Lakers' run.
"Through it all we've got to keep a perspective on things and understand that the game is long," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "The things that we did at the end of the first half are things that our guys will never do and probably never see again in their lifetime. You gotta put that behind you and come out and keep playing. Hey, a couple of turnovers led to a couple of runouts in the second half, and again, we've gotta keep playing basketball. There's still 20 minutes left in the game, and it's a long time.
"To me, this has always been a team since I've been here where when we get put on our heels we always fight back. So, last night was no different. The key is not to get put back on our heels. That's the essence of Game 2 and the essence of the series from my perspective."
But the Mavericks admit that both teams will likely make plenty of adjustments in the second showdown, with the Lakers looking to even the series before it shifts to Dallas for Games 3 and 4.
While the Mavs head into Game 2 looking to put the series in a stranglehold, they also admit that they will have to play much better than they did on Monday night. Despite holding Lakers center Andrew Bynum to just eight points and five rebounds, Dallas was still outrebounded, 44-40, in addition to surrendering 46 points — compared to 36 of their own — in the paint L.A.'s way.
And after surviving a 36-point night by two-time Finals MVP Kobe Bryant, while holding big men Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom to 15 points apiece, the Mavericks say that their defensive intensity will have to be turned up a notch if they are going to return to Dallas up two games to none.
"I think we did a great job on defense on Bynum and Gasol. We've gotta do a fair job on Odom," center Tyson Chandler pointed out. "We've gotta continue to do that throughout the series to have a chance to win."
Meanwhile, the Mavs aren't sitting comfortably after watching the Lakers overcome a 0-1 hole in their first-round matchup against New Orleans before taking the series in six games. For that reason the Mavs say that they can't afford to go into Wednesday night's contest happy with simply splitting the first two games in L.A.
"They just dropped their first game in their last series and won the next one, won the first one on the road and was right back in control of the series. So, we'd love to not let that happen. Gotta stay focused, obviously, and it was a good win for us, but you know they're gonna come after us tomorrow. So, we have to be ready," Nowitzki said.
"We've got to come out and be hungry," point guard Jason Kidd added. "We're a veteran ballclub, we all understand that the champs aren't just gonna let you walk in and win Game 2. We've gotta find a way to put pressure on them. And again, hopefully with two minutes left we have a chance to win."
Note: Game 2 of the Mavericks’ second-round series with the Lakers will tip off Wednesday night at 9:30 p.m. CT, airing nationally on TNT.
Tickets for the first two home games of the Second Round of the 2011 Playoffs will are on sale now. Tickets are priced $19 and up for Round 2. Tickets will be available online at mavs.com, via phone (214-747-6287 or 1-800-4NBA-TIX), the American Airlines Center® North Box Office* and all Ticketmaster outlets (Fiesta Grocery Stores, Simon Mall in Garland and Shops at Willow Bend).
The first-round series between the two teams continues as follows:
Game 2 – Wed May 4 9:30 p.m. CT TNT
Game 3 – Fri May 6 TBD ESPN
Game 4 – Sun May 8 2:30 p.m. CT ABC
Game 5 * Tue May 10 TBD TNT
Game 6 * Thu May 12 TBD ESPN
Game 7 * Sun May 15 2:30 p.m. CT ABC
The Mavs will host a FREE watch party for fans Wednesday night when the Mavs take on the Los Angeles Lakers for Game 2 of the second round of the 2011 Playoffs. The party starts an hour prior to tipoff.
Fans can join the Mavs Dancers, ManiAACs, Street Team, Ali Dee and Ro Parrish to watch the game on the HD big-screen TV on the AT&T Plaza. Fans will also have a chance to win 2011 Mavs Playoff tickets and Mavs autographed prizes.
The South Plaza Fan Shop will be open for fans to purchase their 2011 Playoff t-shirts and other Mavs apparel.
Parking will be available in the Platinum Parking garage and is $5. Food and beverages will be available for purchase (no outside food or beverages will be allowed). Fans will also need to bring their own seating.
Pira Restaurant will be open starting at 7:30 p.m. and will have a special watch party menu available for fans.
Special thanks to 106.1 KISS FM, ESPN and ESPN Deportes for their support of the watch parties.