VIDEO: Luka & Porzingis Lead Mavs Camp 2.0 Practice
DALLAS - The Dallas Mavericks began mandatory workouts - "training camp 2.0,'' one might call it - on Wednesday morning, after which coach Rick Carlisle and GM Donnie Nelson discussed the roster, COVID-19, the nature of the workouts, the social-justice fight (see details on Carlisle's involvement here) and the lack of "trepidation'' in moving soon into the bubble in Orlando for the re-boot of the season.
“Never before have we gone through something like this in the NBA,'' Carlisle told the DFW media via a noon-time Zoom conference. (With video courtesy of the Mavs.) "Some people might look at it with trepidation. I look at it with excitement.”
Carlisle joined Nelson in calling the bubble “one of the safest places to be in the United States.'' They talked off the absences for the eight-game "seeding games'' and then the playoffs of Jalen Brunson, Courtney Lee, Dwight Powell and Willie Cauley-Stein, and of a starting lineup that should on most nights/days feature Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr., Dorian Finney-Smith and Seth Curry.
Carlisle mentioned that he has been tested for COVID-19 a total of five times in his seven days back at work. (The bosses report that no players have yet contracted the coronavirus.) These workouts are one-on-one with masked assistant coaches; the club will eventually progress to bigger groups, and after moving to Orlando on July 8, could have as many as three scrimmages against other clubs.
So they know some things, structurally. But much is unknown, leading to Nelson to offer the quip of the day.
"It's a 'sailor's existence,'' Donnie said of the NBA's uncharted waters to come.