HOUSTON -- This was not a night to have 6-7 DeJuan Blair trying to guard 6-11 Dwight Howard. That would have been a torture situation for Blair.
So the Dallas Mavericks turned to the beleagured Samuel Dalembert, and by all acounts, he held his own.
Howard did manage to put up 29 points and haul in 15 rebounds. But Dalembert and company basically kept him underwraps, especially since Howard had just gotten 35 points and 19 rebounds last Saturday against Detroit.
"He's a tough guy to guard,'' said Dalembert, who finished with eight points, seven rebounds and three steals. "I know they have a good chemistry going with him.
"I've got a couple of elbows (from Howard) and I'll feel them tomorrow.''
Dalembert started the first 10 games of the season, but had fallen out of favor so bad that he didn't even play in the Dec. 14 game against Milwaukee because of a coach's decision. However, with him being the tallest player on Dallas' team other than the 7-foot Dirk Nowitzki, the Mavs basically had no choice but to start him against the Rockets and see if that could ignite his revival.
"It's always a re-adjustment,'' Dalembert said, referring to moving from the bench to the starting lineup. "It's a different thing when you're starting with a group than when you're coming in (off the bench).
"But either way I just managed myself to get ready and when I do get called I just go out there and give my best.''
-- Dwain Price
Follow me on Twitter