Dallas Mavericks

Game 29: Mavs at Trail Blazers

PORTLAND — Looking to bounce back Wednesday night in Portland after dropping the first outing of four-game stretch on the road, the Dallas Mavericks received a bit of good news before stepping into the Moda Center.

Attempting to redeem themselves after squandering a 16-point lead and falling to a 117-107 loss Monday in Denver, the Mavericks tried to get on track 48 hours later. The Mavs also attempted to avenge a 105-95 loss to the Trail Blazers back on Nov. 4, hoping to return the favor as the scene shifted to Portland’s home floor. Meanwhile, the Mavericks learned that 13-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki could soon make his return to the lineup, despite missing his 14th straight game due to a right Achilles strain.

Note: The Mavericks will now continue their road trip Wednesday night in Portland, taking on the Trail Blazers for the second time this season. Portland leads the season series 1-0 after a 105-95 win in Dallas on Nov. 4. The game will tip off at 9 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air nationally on NBA TV and in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270.

The Mavericks return to American Airlines Center on Dec. 27, hosting the Houston Rockets. Houston leads the season series 3-0. The game will tip off at 7:30 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by visiting Mavs.com, or by calling (214) 747-MAVS.

Injury updates:

Dirk Nowitzki (right Achilles strain) — out

Andrew Bogut (right knee injury) — out

Dallas Mavericks

TOTALS PTS AST STL BLK REB DREB OREB TO PF   FGM-A 3PM-A FTM-A
    0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0   0-0 0-0 0-1
                        0.0% 0.0% 0.0%

Portland Trail Blazers

PLAYER MIN PTS AST STL BLK REB DREB OREB TO PF +/- FGM-A 3PM-A FTM-A
Maurice Harkless, F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0-0 0-0 0-0
Al-Farouq Aminu, F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0-0 0-0 0-0
Mason Plumlee, C 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1-1 0-0 0-0
CJ McCollum, G 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0-0 0-0 0-0
Damian Lillard, G 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0-0 0-0 0-0
Pat Connaughton 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Allen Crabbe 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Ed Davis 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Jake Layman 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Meyers Leonard 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Shabazz Napier 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Tim Quarterman 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Noah Vonleh 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Festus Ezeli 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Evan Turner 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0 0-0 0-0

TOTALS PTS AST STL BLK REB DREB OREB TO PF   FGM-A 3PM-A FTM-A
    2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0   1-1 0-0 0-0
                        100.0% 0.0% 0.0%

PORTLAND — Although he won’t be in the lineup for the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night as they play the second outing of their four-game stretch on the road in Portland, 13-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki could make his return sooner than later.

Nowitzki will miss his 14th straight game due to the right Achilles strain that has plagued him all season, sitting once again Wednesday night as the Mavericks (7-21) look to avenge a 105-95 home loss to the Trail Blazers (13-17) on Nov. 4.  However, after being upgraded to questionable entering Wednesday’s matchup, the 7-footer could make his long-awaited return during the team’s current road trip. And with a plan in place for Nowitzki to go through the team’s Thursday practice in Los Angeles, the future Hall of Famer envisions stepping back into game action in the very near future.

“It feels a lot better,” Nowitzki said while giving an injury update following the Mavs’ Wednesday morning shootaround. “You know, I did more and more, and I’ll probably get a good workout tonight and see how it responds. I’ll get my first practice probably tomorrow and just see how it feels. You know, I’ll basically go from day to day, but it’s been encouraging. It hasn’t gotten worse from some of the stuff we’ve been doing, so I’ll be back out there soon.

“I’m not really targeting anything,” he added. “Like I said, we’ll see how it goes tonight, and we’ll see how it goes tomorrow in my first practice in a long, long time. I haven’t really done some of the stuff that obviously I need to do to practice — some of the full-on cutting, pushing off and changing ends. So, we’ll just see how that goes. I’d love to play as soon as I can, but I guess we’ll just see in a couple of days.”

On the season, the 38-year-old Nowitzki is averaging 12.2 points and 6.4 rebounds in five games, shooting just 35.8 percent from the field and 27.3 percent from three-point range while dealing with the Achilles injury. He’s also clocking 26.2 minutes an outing, which is the lowest since his rookie season. However, Mavs coach Rick Carlisle does not plan to rush Nowitzki back into game action too soon. That said, Carlisle acknowledges that there will be a plan in place to bring the ageless superstar back gradually.

“He wants to play, but he’s not there yet,” Carlisle said of Nowitzki’s pending return. “We’ll see. This year has morphed into a much different animal than expected, so we all have to adjust.”

Note: The Mavericks will now continue their road trip Wednesday night in Portland, taking on the Trail Blazers for the second time this season. Portland leads the season series 1-0 after a 105-95 win in Dallas on Nov. 4. The game will tip off at 9 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air nationally on NBA TV and in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270.

The Mavericks return to American Airlines Center on Dec. 27, hosting the Houston Rockets. Houston leads the season series 3-0. The game will tip off at 7:30 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by visiting Mavs.com, or by calling (214) 747-MAVS.

Injury updates:

Dirk Nowitzki (right Achilles strain) — out

Andrew Bogut (right knee injury) — out

PORTLAND — Despite getting a brief boost from the return of backup guard J.J. Barea during Monday night’s game in Denver, the Dallas Mavericks would fail to capitalize on an early double-digit lead on the road.

Leading by as many as 16 during Monday night’s outing, the Mavericks (7-21) would eventually fail victim to their tired legs while completing a difficult back-to-back that began with Sunday’s 99-79 win at home over Sacramento. The Mavs also couldn’t sustain their success after Barea met a strict minute restriction with 11 points, three rebounds and four assists in less than 13 minutes during his first outing since going down Nov. 16 with a left calf strain. And although Barea seemingly didn’t skip a beat during his lengthy layoff, the Mavericks suffered a difficult 117-107 defeat to begin a four-game stretch on the road.

“He seemed to be doing fine,” Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said of Barea’s return to the lineup. “I thought he moved well. You know, his rhythm looked well for a guy that’s been out for five weeks, so it’s a positive.

“He did a lot of good things, and he was one of the reasons we got the lead. But he was also out there when they made a big run against us, so look, it’s one game back. You know, we’re running the Dallas Mavericks’ NBA recovery boutique where we’re playing the guy just the first half, ’cause it’s the right thing to do, and we’re going to do that. I expect his minutes will go up as we go forward. There’s a possibility he could play in the second half at Portland, but we won’t know until (Wednesday). Look, the guy busted his tail to get back earlier than expected, so give him a lot of credit for that, and we’ll just go from here.”

With Barea now working his way into the fold, the Mavericks could also welcome back their undisputed veteran leader Wednesday night in Portland with 13-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki upgraded to questionable. Nowitzki has missed the team’s last 13 games after suffering a setback with the right Achilles strain that has plagued him all season. He could now be available as the Mavs attempt to avenge a 105-95 loss to the Trail Blazers (13-17) in Dallas on Nov. 4.

Outscored 26-19 during the fourth quarter of that November matchup, the Mavericks fell to a hard-fought defeat on their home floor. The Mavs also surrounded 42 points on 12-of-18 shooting to Blazers point guard Damian Lillard in that game, hoping to do a better job of containing the cat-quick guard Wednesday night. And with the Blazers now returning home following a 126-121 loss Tuesday in Sacramento, the Mavericks will attempt to return the favor in the second outing of their road trip by stepping up their play at the defensive end of the floor.

“It’s hard to win when teams shoot over 50 percent,” point guard Deron Williams explained after the Mavs gave up 57 percent shooting during Monday’s loss. “When they’re living in the paint, they’re scoring at will, and that means we’re not playing how we need to defensively. In most of our wins I think we’re holding teams to like 92 points and in losses it’s over 100, so there’s no secret that we need to hold teams below or as close to 100 as possible.”

Note: The Mavericks will now continue their road trip Wednesday night in Portland, taking on the Trail Blazers for the second time this season. Portland leads the season series 1-0 after a 105-95 win in Dallas on Nov. 4. The game will tip off at 9 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air nationally on NBA TV and in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270.

The Mavericks return to American Airlines Center on Dec. 27, hosting the Houston Rockets. Houston leads the season series 3-0. The game will tip off at 7:30 p.m. CT, airing locally on Fox Sports Southwest and 103.3 FM ESPN. The game will also air in Spanish on KFLC AM 1270. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by visiting Mavs.com, or by calling (214) 747-MAVS.

Injury updates:

Dirk Nowitzki (right Achilles strain) — questionable

Andrew Bogut (right knee injury) — out

 

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