The Mavericks will play for a season-high sixth straight win tonight against the Seattle Supersonics. There are a few reason why this might be likely to happen. The Mavs have won 10 straight against the Sonics, and there's no indication that coach P.J. Carlesimo will have a way to figure out how to change that. The Sonics could also get their sixth straight tonight...loss that is.
Full-on rebuilding mode
Just as the Timberwolves that the Mavs played a few nights ago, the Sonics have taken the youthful path and are on their way to rebuilding their franchise from the ground up. Unlike the T'wolves, the Sonics don't have many large cumbersome contracts like Minnesota, which gives them more flexibility for the next few years. That's a good thing for Sonics ownership since owner Clay Bennett is well on his way in trying to relocate the team to Oklahoma City. Their wealth of young talent and lack of long-term contracts will allow them go any direction they wish as a franchise. After the 2009-10 season, they only have $6.75 million in guaranteed money on the books, and that should put them in a position to extend Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and their other youngsters with however much they wish. Speaking of Durant and Green...
The twosome of the future
The lottery was as friendly to the Sonics as any team in history. Not only did they win the second overall pick (which kept them from drafting Greg Oden, whose health is now a giant question mark), but the Celtics got saddled with the fifth pick, despite tanking the season into last place. So, the Sonics saw an opportunity to start over by trading away star veteran Ray Allen for that Celtics pick and letting free-agent Rashard Lewis leave to the Magic for a giant passel of money. With the second overall pick, they took Kevin Durant and with the fifth overall pick, they took Jeff Green. Now, Durant is pretty much a lock to win Rookie of the Year and average 20 points per game in his first season while Green is putting together a promising rookie campaign as well. Expect the two of them to be a pair to be reckoned in a few years.
Some indicative stats
Despite being 9-26 on the season, the Sonics are the best rebounding team in the NBA. They're also dead last in turnovers. They're averaging 45.5 rebounds and 16 turnovers per game, which is indicative of a young, athletic team who misses a lot of shots and doesn't take care of the ball very well. Chris Wilcox, Kurt Thomas and Nick Collison will be banging the boards all night, and Green and Durant will also be getting some of that action as well. The Mavs need to establish position inside early and exploit the Sonics' carelessness.
- This dorkus makes me sad that the Sonics are probably leaving Seattle.
- Durant has the wingspan of a pterodactyl.
- Too bad Vlad Rad isn't still sporting the green 77.
Random useless fact
Sonics forward Mickael Gelabale is one one three players born in the French West Indies. Warriors forward Mickael Pietrus and Lakers forward Ronny Turiaf are the others.
-Scooter Hendon, Hoops Nerd