SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The Mavs are determined to seize the second seed. The Kings are looking at their lottery odds.
The first quarter went as expected for a game pitting teams in those opposite situations.
The Mavs pretty much did whatever they wanted offensively, shooting 60 percent from the floor. You know things are going well when Eduardo Najera knocks down a corner 3 and cuts backdoor for a layup on the first two possessions after checking into the game.
The Kings can't seem to figure out how to hold onto the ball, committing eight turnovers.
It all adds up to Mavs 35, Kings 24 at the end of the first quarter.
The challenge for the Mavs isn't to beat a bad team. It's to make it a big enough blowout that the stars get to watch the fourth quarter from the bench on the butt end of a back-to-back.