DALLAS -- We'll see if the Dallas Mavericks can carry momentum from their 101-73 win over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday into the final dozen games. Thursday's game against the woeful Minnesota Timberwolves likely won't provide much insight, but a six-game road trip that starts Saturday against the Utah Jazz, should provide all answers necessary.
If Dallas picks up steam on the trip as the postseason draws near, center Tyson Chandler can again be credited with a solid job of brutal, honest leadership.
After Friday's 97-91 home loss to the San Antonio Spurs, culminating a stretch of five losses in eight games and three in four, including a home defeat to the Los Angeles Lakers, Chandler stood up and made this plea:
"What are we going to do fellas? Are we going to go the opposite way? Because we can call it a summer real early. Or are we going to buckle down and get things together and get things defensively together and do what we all said we can do and accomplish what we all thought we could accomplish at the beginning of the year?"
The initial results Sunday were positive. The Mavs enjoyed their largest win of the season -- and first 20-point win of the season -- while giving up the fewest points of the season and the fewest points in a quarter, allowing just 10 in the fourth.
But, as Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said afterward, it's a 30-win team and no one's going to get too excited about that.
Still, after a brutal stretch it was a start, and at least Chandler said what needed to be said.