On Friday night, the Dallas Mavericks began their five-game homestand on the wrong foot, falling 117-109 to the New York Knicks.
It was the ‘Julius Randle’ show in Dallas; the reigning All-Star scored 44 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists in the Knicks’ impressive win.
CONTINUE READING: Randle Too Much As Mavs Fall To Knicks 117-109
After the game, head coach Rick Carlisle said that Dallas needs to keep its head in the game:
“We’ve just got to keep our eye on the ball,” Carlisle said. “There can’t be any letup. ... But coming into the year, we talked about the importance to lifting our defense to a higher level. I think our overall belief is stronger.''
Statistically, Mavericks star Luka Doncic had a fine game, finishing with 22 points and 19 assists, but ultimately his performance wasn’t enough to give Dallas a lead.
Kristaps Porzingis also made an impact with a 23-point double-double and 12 assists. Dallas (7th seed) is currently two games behind the Portland Trailblazers.
Now let's hear Mavs talk:
Carlisle on staying focused:
This is a season where there’s always a reason to let go of the rope, whether it’s for COVID or a bazillion games or whatever, there’s just a lot going on.”
Dorian Finney-Smith on starting better:
“We’ve got to start coming out a little better,” forward Dorian Finney-Smith said. “When it’s easy for us to score, just trading baskets, that’s never a good sign for us. We’ve just got to step it up defensively.”
Knicks’ Randle on playing in his hometown:
“Yeah, I was locked in and focused. I always love playing at home, in front of my friends, in front of my family. It’s always special for me.”
The Mavericks (30-25) will stay home and face the Sacramento Kings (22-34) on Sunday at 6:30 CST. ... and Dallas will try again to not "let go of the rope.''