By Dorothy J. Gentry
Photos: Dorothy J. Gentry
In the past week the Dallas Mavericks held Media Day, started training camp and held its annual Fan Jam where MFFL’s got to watch the team scrimmage in person at American Airlines Center. The team is looking to make some real noise this season after finishing fifth in the Western Conference with a 42-30 record, and then losing in the first-round playoff series to the Los Angeles Clippers in seven games.
Off the court, the Mavs have a whole new coaching staff, starting with Head Coach Jason Kidd, a former Mavs player who helped the team to its only championship in 2011. Kidd has added new hires to his coaching staff including former NBA player Jared Dudley and current WNBA player Kristi Tolliver of the Los Angeles Sparks.
Kidd says former Mavs Tyson Chandler and JJ Barea – his teammates on the 2011 Championship team – are also going to help out this season as part of the Mavs Legends coaching program created by Mark Cuban. It gives former players a chance to work with the team and get a feel for coaching.
New faces on the court include Reggie Bullock, Sterling Brown, Moses Brown and Frank Ntilikina. These additions will bring some new chemistry and toughness to the team looking to make some noise in the talent-laden Western Conference, home to the LeBron James-led Lakers and Stephen Curry-led Warriors.
Heard throughout media day:
“I don’t care about that. That’s faraway, the end of the season. My goal and the team goal is to win a championship – that’s it.” – Luka Doncic on being the NBA’s early season MVP favorite.
“I love You Tube. I spend my time researching and typing in crazy things like most random things found in the ocean. I just learn so much off of You Tube.” – Reggie Bullock on how he spends his off time
“There’s a different type of energy here. A different ‘pop’ and it’s good.” – Tim Hardaway Jr. on the changes in the Mavs organization in the offseason.
“The kid is unbelievable. He’s just a super talented basketball player. And extremely smart on the basketball court.” – Kristaps Porzingis on Luka Doncic
“This is home.” – Boban Marjanovic on re-signing with the Mavs in the offseason
“I think he’s in way better shape this year – especially mentally. He’s going to have a great season.” – Luka Doncic on Kristaps Porzingis who has battled injuries the past year.
The Mavs’ first preseason game is Oct. 6 at AAC against the Utah Jazz. They open the season on the road Oct. 21 in Atlanta, and the home opener is Oct. 26 against the Houston Rockets.