The Dallas Mavericks can improve seeding – does it matter?

Dallas Mavericks (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks (Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images) /

With the improbable comeback on Monday, the Dallas Mavericks could potentially improve their seeding.

When the NBA season restarted, the Dallas Mavericks hoped they could improve their standing in the playoff seeding. Sitting at seventh, the Mavs were lined up to face the LA Clippers in Round 1 of the playoffs.

The Clippers, considered the favorite in the West, boast two top-10 players, and the league’s deepest bench. They have championship pedigree and a dominant record against the Mavs. If Dallas wanted to avoid a first round exit, they’d need to move up from that seventh spot.

Most hope in doing so was lost when Dallas dropped a pair of winnable games to the Rockets and Suns early in the restart. But an upset against the Bucks and a crazy comeback win against the Jazz, opened up the possibilities once again.

The odds aren’t in their favor, but if the Mavs sweep the final couple games and the Jazz drop their final games, Dallas will leapfrog Utah and avoid that dreaded matchup against the Clips.

This opportunity is made possible by the Dallas bench who won on Monday sans their superstars. Now the Mavs starters are rested and hope is restored. So is now the time to adjust goals, and push for that improved seeding?

Here’s where it gets tricky. Everyone wants to improve the seeding – but at what cost? Dallas has had more OT games than anyone else. As such, their key players (Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis) have suffered more mileage than most NBA starters in this restart. That’s why the Mavs rested them on Monday and seemingly conceded their fate in the standings.

If the Mavs go all-in and try to run the table they could easily be successful. Dallas faces much easier opponents than the Jazz do and it’s perfectly reasonably to expect. But what if it comes at the cost of extra wear and tear on Luka and KP?

You see, when Dallas beat the Bucks over the weekend they proved they can literally beat anyone. That’s all the confidence they need heading into the playoffs – even if it is against the Clippers. That may ultimately be be better than improving their seeding but wearing out their superstars in the process.

If the improved seeding comes at a cost of Luka’s health and efficiency, is it still worth it?

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That’s the question the Dallas Mavericks must ask themselves. Rick Carlisle is clearly going to try to win the last remaining games this season, but to what degree? What say you? Would you go for broke or would you concede defeat and make sure Luka and KP are rested for the playoffs?

  • Published on 08/11/2020 at 12:30 PM
  • Last updated at 08/11/2020 at 08:06 AM