|Top NBA Teams Duke it Out: Phoenix at Dallas|
|Written by TheSpread|
|Wednesday, 14 March 2007 02:00|
NBA Basketball: Phoenix Suns at Dallas Mavericks - Mavericks Favored
Two days after their 17-game winning streak was stopped, the Mavericks look to extend their home win streak Wednesday when they face the Phoenix Suns in showdown of teams with the NBA's top two records.
Oddsmakers have made Dallas -4 point spread favorites(NBA Odds) for todays game, the over/under has been set at 208 total points
Phoenix also put together a 17-game winning streak earlier in the season, and while the Mavericks (52-10) were getting all of the attention during their run, the Suns (49-14) put together a pair of five-game winning streaks and are 10-1 since the All-Star break to stay close to Dallas at 3 1/2 games back.
"We'll see what happens," Phoenix coach Mike D'Antoni said of Wednesday's contest. "We'd love to play well against them and measure ourselves to see what we're doing. Dallas is still out there a little ways (in the standings), but when you play Dallas, it's a measuring stick for both teams. It will be a great game for the fans, and it means a little bit in March, more when we play them in April. One thing's for sure, it will be a great game."
The teams meet for the final time April 1 in Phoenix.
The Mavericks were blown out 117-100 by Golden State on Monday as their streak ended in ugly fashion. Dallas hadn't lost since Jan. 25 and had put together an incredible run of 52 wins in 56 games.
The Mavs trailed by 29 after three quarters as their winning streak, tied for seventh-longest in NBA history, came to an end.
"They came out swinging, and we were never ready for the attack," said Dallas forward Dirk Nowitzki, who scored just 13 points on 3-of-11 shooting and committed seven turnovers. "We were backpedaling all game long. We were just never really ready to play. That's something we've got to learn from if we want to do anything this year in the postseason."
Dallas is the first team in NBA history with three winning streaks of at least 12 games in a season, and the Mavs still have an impressive run going at home, where they've won a team-record 23 in a row.
Dallas - which plays Phoenix and Boston at the American Airlines Center before leaving on a five-game road trip - hopes the comforts of home help it get over the disheartening loss to Golden State.
"We weren't here tonight," Mavs coach Avery Johnson said. "We just didn't have it. We got outplayed and worked and hustled, but our guys are professional. They don't have many nights like this, so we'll bounce back. ... This leaves a bad taste in our mouth. We don't like to play like this."
The Mavericks have won both meetings with the Suns this season, including a 101-99 victory at home Dec. 28 that Nowitzki won with a last-second shot.
That was one of only four losses for Phoenix in its last 27 road games. The Suns just wrapped up a five-game homestand, winning all five contests by an average of 12 points.
Phoenix beat Houston 103-82 on Monday, getting 32 points from Leandro Barbosa. D'Antoni picked up his 200th career victory despite being ejected for the first time in two seasons.
Barbosa matched his career high for the second time in three games and continued to bolster his case for the NBA's sixth man of the year award, as he's averaging 17.5 points off the bench.
"What can you say? The guy is playing great basketball," Suns guard Steve Nash said. "He's getting better and better and I think he's even becoming more versatile. He's just a great weapon for us and it is just really fun to watch him develop."
Despite being more known for their high-powered offense, the Suns have held opponents under 100 points in five of their last seven games.
By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us
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