Dallas Mavericks: Luckily for us, ‘bad momentum’ doesn’t really exist

Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

The Dallas Mavericks, losers of their last six, are in the midst of a pretty significant losing streak. It’s their third worst in the Rick Carlisle era and drops the Mavs to 13th in the Western Conference.

But luckily for the Dallas Mavericks, losing does not necessarily beget losing. That’s right, “momentum” isn’t really a thing. At least not scientifically. Sure, there’s some physiological issues that can arise in some of the more fragile psyches of the team, but losing a game (or six) does not have a tangible effect on the next game.

Same goes for winning as well. One game’s result does not impact the probability of another game. Now, good teams win and bad teams lose so we can say a team with a bad record is more likely to lose again than a team with a good record. But that’s not momentum or any hoodoo Voodoo kind of streak.

Momentum isn’t real and the Dallas Mavericks win probability is unaffected by the losing streak

Just because the Dallas Mavericks lost the last six games, doesn’t mean they’re more likely to lose a seventh – than they’d otherwise be. Just like a team coming off a six game winning streak isn’t any more likely to win a seventh – than they’d otherwise be. Momentum is all in our heads.

This is a big reason why sports phycology is such a growing field in the professional ranks. Players are convinced momentum matters and they adjust their play accordingly. A professional player shooting 100 shots is just as likely to sink the 10th shot attempt as they are the 20th and 90th. But a player who’s just missed 10 in row may start to doubt their ability and adjust their shot process. They may abandon the fundamentals they know to be true, just because they’ve been recently unsuccessful. That is where players and teams get in trouble.

Confidence is an important thing and it’s important the Dallas Mavericks stay the course. That’s how percentages and probabilities work. They go up and down on the micro level but they even out when looking at the big picture.

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That’s something that fans, coaches, and players should all keep in mind during these dark days. If fundamentals, discipline, and effort are all lacking – then by all means – correct the issue. But teams can’t win every game and somethings that happens in a row.

It makes perfect sense that time is now for the Dallas Mavericks. The Mavs have only played one game this season with their full roster. And two of their best defensive players were missing during most of the streak. It makes sense their defense has tanked. It makes sense they’ve lost games.

Rick Carlisle doesn’t need an overcorrection to get this team on the right path, he just needs to stay on course and keep everyone focused on each play.

Next. Did Willie fix the Mavs?. dark

The Dallas Mavericks can snap out of this losing streak at any time because they have a team that can win and momentum isn’t real

  • Published on 02/03/2021 at 13:15 PM
  • Last updated at 02/03/2021 at 13:11 PM