National Basketball Association
Dallas at Brooklyn
When: 7:30 PM ET, Saturday, March 17, 2018
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
Two of the worst teams in the NBA square off Saturday, when the Brooklyn Nets host the Dallas Mavericks. Brooklyn has lost 18 of its last 21 contests to fall 27 games below .500, while Dallas is just a tad better at 25 below the break-even mark.
The Nets fell 120-116 to Philadelphia on Friday, and the starting lineup was notable because point guard Spencer Dinwiddie (57 starts) wasn't in it. "I think Spencer is in a little bit of a rut," Brooklyn coach Kenny Atkinson told reporters after the contest. "I do think that offensively. Defensively, he's been very good. It's definitely not a knock on Spencer at all. He's had a great year. Just a little shakeup." The Mavericks put up a good fight against Eastern Conference-leading Toronto on Friday before losing 122-115 in overtime for their 19th setback in 26 games. Harrison Barnes scored 27 points against the Raptors and has recorded 25 or more in five of his last eight contests.TV:
7:30 p.m. ET, FS Southwest (Dallas), YES (Brooklyn)ABOUT THE MAVERICKS (22-47):
Rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. scored 19 points against Toronto but is just 17-of-54 shooting over his last three games. Smith has been displaying signs of being tired while enduring the rigors of an NBA season for the first time, and coach Rick Carlisle is observing the budding star closely. "He's progressed in many areas," Carlisle told reporters. "The No. 1 thing is the tempo and pulse of the game that you have to have as a point guard because now in the NBA, you must be able to score and facilitate things for your teammates, who in many cases don't have the ability to create on their own."ABOUT THE NETS (21-48):
D'Angelo Russell struggled mightily against Philadelphia with just eight points on 3-of-14 shooting after putting together two strong performances. The 22-year-old, who averaged 29 points and went 11-for-20 from 3-point range in the two-game span, is looking to finish strong after missing two-plus months due to knee surgery. The status of Dante Cunningham will be determined Saturday after he suffered a left eye contusion and departed to loss to Philadelphia.BUZZER BEATERS
1. The Mavericks have won five of the last seven meetings, but the Nets prevailed 109-104 on Nov. 29.
2. Dallas G Yogi Ferrell is 3-for-18 from 3-point range in a four-game span since going 6-for-7 against Denver on March 6.
3. Brooklyn SG Allen Crabbe (illness) sat out against the 76ers and likely will miss Saturday's game as well.PREDICTION:
Nets 107, Mavericks 103
Stats and Records