Dallas At Miami
When: 8:00 PM
ET, Friday, January 30, 2015
Where: American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida
The Dallas Mavericks are in free fall and look to avoid their first five-game losing streak since 2008 when they visit the Miami Heat on Friday in the second of three straight road games. The Mavericks have lost four straight for the first time since 2013 and are 2-10 against the other seven current playoff teams in the West. The Heat have their own problems, as star guard Dwyane Wade left Tuesday's loss to Milwaukee with a hamstring injury and is expected to miss extended time.
Dallas is 11-9 since the acquisition of Rajon Rondo, who went scoreless for the 21st time in his career in Wednesday's 99-94 loss at Houston, but the bench is also being badly outplayed during the skid. “There’s no one answer, but we’ve got to keep up the collective fight,” Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. “We all own this. We all own losses; we all own what happens when it’s a struggling period of time, and that’s why we always say we’ve got to stick together and fight through it.” Rondo has been particularly ineffective during the skid, shooting 13-of-34 with 24 assists and 12 turnovers and sitting during crunch time in one contest.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, ESPN, FSN Southwest (Dallas), Sun Sports (Miami)
ABOUT THE MAVERICKS (30-17): Rondo has been far from spectacular with Dallas (10 points, seven assists, 40.2 percent shooting) but the loss of dependable reserves Brandan Wright and Jae Crowder in the trade with Boston is turning out to be just as troublesome. The bench has been outscored by 76 points during the skid, and the Rockets' Josh Smith, a Mavericks target after being released by Detroit, matched Dallas' entire bench production Wednesday with 18 points. "It's been tough because we have a different team," reserve guard Devin Harris said. "We went from more of a pick-and-roll team — getting guys at the rim, and if they take away the lob, we get wide-open 3s. We're not getting that anymore, so we've got to figure out different ways to be effective."
ABOUT THE HEAT (20-25): Miami lost to Milwaukee 109-102 on Tuesday for the third time this season despite 26 points from Chris Bosh and 16 points and 16 rebounds from newfound star Hassan Whiteside. In addition to Wade, Luol Deng (calf) and Chris Anderson (elbow/back) are questionable for Friday. "We're not feeling sorry for ourselves," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "Nobody's feeling sorry for us."
1. Behind 30 points from Deng, the Heat beat the Mavericks 105-96 on Nov. 9 — their seventh straight regular-season win in the series since the Mavericks took the NBA title in six games in 2011.
2. Lost in Dallas' skid has been the play of Monta Ellis, who scored 33 against Houston and is averaging 26.3 points on 53.6 percent shooting in the four losses.
3. One beneficiary of all the injuries has been the 7-0 Whiteside, who is averaging 13.1 points on 64.5 percent shooting, 9.9 rebounds and 3.6 blocks in 23.7 minutes in his last seven games.
PREDICTION: Mavericks 105, Heat 98
Stats and Records
Miami Off vs
93.1 Points For
101.9 Points Against