Can the Mavs beat the Clippers? Scouting Report

If you want the full report then you’ll have to listen to the podcast. You can do so without an account at the Anchor link. 

However, if you prefer your content in written format, you can read my notes below.

Keys to the series for the Mavs

LA Clippers v Dallas Mavericks

Offensively

  • Luka can get inside whenever he wants.
    • The Clippers are married to their 1 on 1 defense and we can use that against them.
    • It can’t just be Luka though, THJ and Seth need to be aggressive attacking their man off the bounce, especially if they get a switch.
  • We have to use the hell out of KP.
    • They have no man that can guard him 1 on 1. Everybody except Zubac is too short and Zubac isn’t quick enough to keep KP in front. He has to be aggressive his entire time on the court and we have to feed him.
  • Luka and KP have to shoot 30 FTs
  • THJ and Seth have to give us 30.
    • We got 21 from them in the first two matchups and 19 from THJ and Burke (Seth was out) in the third. They have to step up to give us a chance. If Delon wants to stake his claim, he’ll get aggressive attacking the basket in his time as well.

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Defensively: 

  • DFS CANNOT guard Kawhi.
    • Kawhi can do whatever he wants when DFS is on him. In the first two games that meant simply backing him down and shooting over him or going through him to get to the basket. There was literally no resistance. Luka was actually better against Kawhi. 
  • Maxi does bother Kawhi.
    • When Maxi was on Kawhi, Kawhi was turned into a jump shooter. When he tried to go through him he got frustrated because Maxi held his ground. I think he blew by him once but started his run at half court. 
  • We give up way too many easy baskets inside.
    • In every single game, the Clippers were getting wide-open dunks and layups off of simple pick and roll action. We have to do a better job of defending the layup/dunk.
    • If they get the jumper we live with that. If they get by us. Foul HARD if you aren’t Luka or KP. Make them think twice about coming inside. 
  • THJ cannot guard PG
    • THJ’s weak effort getting over screens lets PG do whatever he wants also. 
    • I would much rather DFS get that assignment.
  • We need two “Bigs” on the court.
    • One guy who takes rebounding and interior defense seriously (Bobi, MKG) 
    • Maxi and KP vs Harrell and Zubac is not a thing we should expect to work for long stretches of the game. Yes, we have to do it for a stretch but hopefully, they are given Bobi and MKG to relieve them some. 

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My defense of Boban

In the closest game we’ve had against the Clippers, Boban had 12 and 7 with 2 blocks after Powell went down. He played 16 minutes and was in at the start of two runs that the Mavs went on in that game.  

In the last game, Bobi started and had 2 points, 4 boards, and 1 block. There was a lot of talk about Zubac destroying him in those 5 minutes but the game was tied at that time. I challenge anyone to tell me who did a better job against Zubac but I won’t hold my breath because the answer is absolutely no one. KP was hooping in that game and came out at a minus 4. Every other starter was -19 or more.


The rotations

Starters

Luka

THJ

DFS

Maxi

KP

_______

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Big man rotations

  • MKG in for Maxi after 5 minutes
  • Maxi and Boban in for KP and MKG after 5 more. 
  • Run with those guys down to about 8 minutes left in the 2nd before getting KP in. 
  • DFS only gets time at the 4 if Zubac and Harrell are both out. 

Guard rotations

  • Seth for THJ after 5 minutes if THJ isn’t hitting or aggressive. 
  • Delon is Luka’s backup. Strictly. If he’s not aggressive, Seth or Burke becomes his backup. 
  • Jackson is DFS’ backup (I’d be very strict about his responsibilities. Safety on D after misses. Driving when opportunities present themselves.) Unfortunately, he is the only other wing we have with any size. 

Closing lineup is 

Luka

Whoever is hotter between Seth and THJ

DFS (to guard PG)

Maxi (to guard Kawhi) 

And KP

Why No JJ?

This is about the future. We have to see who works with KP and Luka for the long haul and who is expendable. 


luka-doncic

Other notes

We lose a lot of games in the middle. Yes, we end games poorly but the middle of the game is where our lack of depth inside is exploited and we give up even more easy points than usual. By mixing in MKG and Boban the hope would be to stop some of that bleeding. 

The most important thing in this series is that it is Luka and KP’s first taste of the real NBA. Regular season stardom and accolades are great but if you don’t do it on the big stage, none of that matters. I’m excited to see both of them get a taste of basketball at the highest level that it is played.

I believe we can steal a game or two if we make the right moves and I’ll be watching Rick’s rotations closely. If you agree, disagree, or are indifferent sound off on twitter @Bibscorner.

-Bibs

PS: Before I added this last section, Grammarly was telling me that my tone in this piece was “worried.” lol After the final paragraph it changed to primarily formal, but also still worried and with a dash of confidence.

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