DALLAS -- Samuel Dalembert got the Dallas Mavericks off to a terrific start Tuesday night against the Washington Wizards.
Dalembert tossed in 11 of his season-high 15 points and grabbed three of his five rebounds in the first period of a game the Mavs won, 105-95.
"He got off to a good scoring start because he was active, guys were finding him and he was finishing plays,'' coach Rick Carlisle said. "Once again, (it was) similar to (Saturday) night in Milwakuee when he went back in late fourth quarter and made a very big offensive rebound play, knocked in a couple of big free throws and did some very solid things.''
Dalembert converted 5-of-7 shots and also collected a pair of steals against the Wizards.
"What we need is his length and athleticism,'' said Dirk Nowitzki, who poured in 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds. "We need some basket protection and rebounding.
"And offensively he needs to catch the ball, take his time and finish. If it isn't there he needs to pass the ball back out to the shooters and run another play, keep some possessions alive and get some offensive reobunds.''
Nowitzki has noticed a big change in Dalembert's game since his poor performance opening day against Atlanta.
"I think ever since he was clale dout by coach that first game he has been phenomenal,'' Nowitzki said. "He is adjusting to his role and ha done everything we asked him to do, and he has been fun to play with because he is active and he wants to win.''
-- Dwain Price
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