DALLAS -- While many of his peers may beg to differ, Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle enjoyed the numerous obstacles the NBA lockout presented last year.
The bad scheduling and the few practice sessions provided intangibles not seen in a normal 82-game season. But all of the uncertainties gave Carlisle more opportunities to gameplan for an opponent.
“We knew last year was going to be different and challenging,’’ Carlisle said after this morning’s shootaround at American Airlines Center. “I said many times I enjoyed last year.
“I enjoyed the different kind of challenges it presented and how to face them. This year we have more time and we need to use it the right way.’’
The NBA employed a 66-game season last year, and the Mavs finished with a 36-30 record and were eliminated in a four-game sweep by Oklahoma City in the first round of the playoffs.
“Last year was an outlyer -- that’s not going to happen again,’’ Carlisle said. “If it’s a possibility it won’t come up for several years going forward.
“So hopefully it’s a once every 12- or 13-year thing that could even be a conversation.’’
The season didn’t start until Dec. 25 last year. That means the Mavs – like all NBA players and coaches – were going through some anxious moments while the NBA and the players’ association hammer out a new collective bargaining agreement.
“Last year at this time I was in South Carolina,’’ Carlisle said. “On
about the fourth hole.’’
Carlisle’s Mavs will play host to the Houston Rockets at 7:30 tonight at the AAC.
-- Dwain Price
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