File this in the gotta-know-the-team-you-cover folder. A few days back, Avery brought up the idea of both Josh Howard and Devin Harris earning spots on the NBA's all-defense team. So I asked if he had his own all-defense Mavs team, five guys he could throw out there to shut it down.
He does, of course. But as often is the case with the General, he wasn't going to just give me the team. He offered up this challenge: "No names. You take a shot at it and Sarah [Melton, the team's PR director] will email me your story and I'll see if you're right. What about that?"
As someone at every game, I felt fairly certain I could decipher the five, so I asked Avery if I could give it a guess right then and there. He obliged. Josh and Harris were no brainers. I followed with Devean George, Gana Diop and, after a little thought, I finished with Dirty. That's what we call Dirk.
Five for five.