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The Trip Continues In Dallas

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The Dallas Mavericks traded Devin Harris to the New Jersey Nets last season for Jason Kidd (the deal was larger than that, but those were the key pieces.) Since then, Harris has emerged as a scoring machine for the Nets while Kidd is winding down his career in Dallas.

Tonight, the Sixers will look to build off their win over the Clippers, the Mavs are going for three straight after beating the Clippers on the road and the T-Wolves at home. A look at the stats and a couple of match-ups after the jump.
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Not surprising that the Mavs out-shoot the Sixers, pretty much everyone does. I am a little surprised they dominate the defensive glass like they do, but I think that has a lot to do with Kidd. He's an excellent rebounder for his position (6.5/game).

There's really no use digging too deep into the stats. One thing is probably going to decide this game, and you guys know what it is. Three-point shooting. Four of the Mavs five starters are above-average three-point shooters, and they aren't shy about taking them.

  • Nowitzki - 1/2.6 per game (36.7%)
  • Terry - 2.2/5.9 per game (37.2%)
  • Kidd - 1.5/4.0 per game (38.4%)
  • Howard - 1.2/3.2 per game (36.2%)
Combined, they average 5.9 makes on 15.7 attempts per game (37.6%).

Here are the Sixers' starters from three:

  • Thad - 0.8/2.5 per game (32.5%)
  • Iguodala - 0.6/2.6 per game (22%)
  • Willie - 0.7/2.0 per game (33.9%)
  • Miller - 0.2/0.6 per game (25%)
Comined, they average 2.3 makes on 7.7 attempts per game (29.9%)

Obviously, this is a huge disadvantage. If the Sixers are going to have any prayer of winning this game, they are going to have to do a superb job of defending the three. At this point, I feel like hitting threes is out of their hands. They need some luck to be league average on any given night. Since that is the case, they have to do a better job of defending the three to keep the point deficit on threes to a minimum.

On offense, I like a couple of match-ups. Miller has a quickness advantage over Kidd at this point, he should be able to drive by him. He won't, however, be able to post him up. Kidd's too big and too strong for that.

Thad should have a big quickness advantage on Nowitzki. I've always liked it when teams go after scorers on the defensive end. Have Thad run him all over the floor and work on him at the top the key where he can go by him on the dribble. Make him use up his energy on defense, if at all possible.

Josh Howard vs. Andre Iguodala will probably be the most-even match-up of the night. The winner of that battle could determine the game.

The match-up I hate is Willie Green on Jason Terry. Willie's defensive proficiencies have been highlighted over the past five games. His poor shooting over the stretch (16/38 from the floor, 1/8 from three, 1/4 from the line) has made him an unquestioned liability. If Willie loses track of Terry in the offense, the Sixers will pay.

The tip is at 8:30pm and I'll be here, live, watching the game so join the discussion in the comments.
by Brian on Jan 2 2009
Tags: Basketball | Jason Kidd | Mavericks | Pregame | Sixers |