DALLAS -- It made Rick Carlisle sick to watch Clippers guard Randy Foye get wide-open look after wide-open look.
“I was waiting for somebody to knock him down, do something,” Carlisle said after Foye’s season-high 28-point performance in the Clippers’ rout of the Mavs. “We just didn’t do that, and really that’s on me. If we’re not aware and if we’re not going to be physical with a guy that just gets it going like that, then it’s on the head coach.”
Consider that a passive-aggressive way for a coach to call out his team for playing such passive defense. The problem is the Mavs weren’t even close enough to touch Foye, much less knock him down, on most of his buckets.
Foye, who entered the night averaging 9.8 points per game, tied a Clippers record by hitting eight 3-pointers on 15 attempts behind the arc. He was 6-of-12 from long range while scoring 22 points in the second half.
The Mavs made a futile attempt to try to defend the much more athletic Clippers man-to-man in the first half, when Los Angeles shot 52.5 percent from the floor en route to a 14-point halftime lead. Dallas adjusted to a zone defense in the second half, which Foye exploited over and over again.
“Eventually if you play zone for 24 minutes straight, the other team is going to find some openings,” Dirk Nowitzki said. “That’s what the zone is going to give up, some shots here or there. Give them credit. They found them.”
You couldn’t find a Dallas defender in the picture on a few of Foye’s 3-pointers.
Foye lit the Mavs up from the left side of the floor. He hit four 3s from virtually the same spot near the corner in the third quarter and a couple more from the left wing in the fourth.
“When a guy gets three or four consecutive shots in the same spot, something’s wrong,” Shawn Marion said. “When you don’t pick up on that after the first, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt after the second one. But when you get to the third and the fourth and he’s getting the same shot, damn, something’s [expletive] wrong.”
The Mavs kept giving each other confused looks after Foye made uncontested shots. The Mavs weren’t even on the same page after the game on the subject of how they could have disrupted Foye’s rhythm.
Jason Terry scoffed at Carlisle’s suggestion that Mavs should have tried to put Foye on his butt a time or two.
“I don’t know what that was going to do,” Terry said. “You do that and he’s going to get two free throws. If that’s me and you do that to me, I’m just going to shoot some more. So I don’t know if that works.”
Maybe it wouldn’t have worked, but the results couldn’t have been any worse.