DALLAS -- Just about everyone is harping on the two crucial turnovers Dallas Mavericks guard OJ Mayo made in the final 23.9 seconds of Monday's 105-101 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.
But coach Rick Carlisle said the Mavs had already lost to the Hawks way before Mayo's two blunders.
"The honest truth is that this whole conversation would be moot if we would have played in
the first five minutes of the game,'' Carlisle said after Tuesday's practice at American Airlines Center. "The fact that we got down 10-0 (with 8:42 left in the first quarter) -- this is not a fourth quarter league.
"This is a first quarter league. The first quarter translates to the fourth (quarter) much more than anybody can possibly imagine.''
The way the Mavs started Monday's game, Carlisle noted it's a credit to his team that they were even able to get back into the game.
"Playing the full 48 minutes is really the key, and we didn’t do it (Monday) night,'' Carlisle said. "We had just too many breakdowns (against the Hawks).
"The fact that we hung in or were as close as we were, we were fortunate.''
-- Dwain Price
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