The Mavericks play the Warriors twice in these final eight games. For its sake, Dallas needs to take both from lottery-bound Golden State.
A series sweep won't happen. The Warriors took care of that last month by spanking a rubber-legged Mavericks team that rested Jason Kidd on the final game of nine in 12 nights and three in a row. Tonight's game kicks off four games in five nights against three teams that have already defeated Dallas this season.
The Warriors lost Wednesday night at Portland to a Trail Blazers team that did not have the services of injured LaMarcus Aldridge.
"We’re looking at a stretch here where these teams have beaten us and we’re looking for a little revenge, a little payback, and hopefully we can have some success," Jason Terry said. "It’s definitely a stretch of games here where if we do what we’re supposed to do, we can get a leg up on the competition."
As for Kidd, he will play in his second game back since a four-game hiatus with a strained right groin. For the first time since the March 30 game at Orlando, the Mavs are a fully healthy lot -- or at least as healthy as they can be at this point. All hands, with the exception of the banished Lamar Odom, are on deck.
"This is the first time we’ve had this complement of players healthy, I think," Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. "It’s a beginning and we don’t have a lot of time to be experimenting and this and that. When we hit the floor, every second counts from here on out, we know that."
Will the Mavs' play back that up tonight?
Records: Mavs (32-26); Warriors (22-35)
Where: Oracle Arena
Radio: ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1270 AM (Spanish)
What to watch: Brandan Wright returns to the city where his career started as a lottery pick. The Warriors never really saw this side of Wright as the 6-foot-10 power forward converted to center has recently taken over starter-like minutes for Dallas. He's excited to play in Oakland for the first time since the Warriors traded him in February 2011. He missed the Mavs' first trip last month because of a concussion. With the Warriors' small lineup, expect Wright to see plenty of time against his old team.
The Warriors' little man had a huge night against Dallas in early March, scoring 21 points on 6-of-10 shooting, including 3-of-6 from behind the 3-point arc. Golden State won that game handily as the Mavs were playing their ninth game in 12 days and third in a row. Robinson didn't see West in that game. He was still out with a fractured right ring finger. Since his return, West has been playing on a gimpy left ankle that will surely be tested by the jitterbug that is Robinson.
Injuries: Mavs -- None. Warriors -- G Stephen Curry (ankle) is out.
Up next: Mavs at Portland Trail Blazers, 9:30 p.m. Friday