Blogtable: A Tussle in Texas


VIDEO: Houston beat the Mavericks in Dallas on Jan. 29 to split the season series, 2-2

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


Movers and shakers | Texas throwdown | LeBron’s future


A couple of Texas teams are bunched in the West. If they meet in the playoffs: Houston or Dallas?

Steve Aschburner, NBA.com: Houston. By a pretty wide margin. The Mavericks, in my opinion, have nothing that can touch the James Harden-Dwight Howard-Chandler Parsons trio, with Terrence Jones in the mix as well. That group can further jell and is backed up with backcourt depth and Omer Asik as needed up front. Dallas, to me, has maxed out.

Fran Blinebury, NBA.com: I might be overreacting to the Rockets’ recent good run.  They have been up and down all season.  But it seems they are learning to get the ball inside to Dwight Howard consistently and the Mavs still don’t have a stopper in the middle. With James Harden, the simple math says Houston’s two All-Stars beat the Mavs’ one.

Chandler Parsons (l), Dirk Nowitzki (Glenn James/NBAE)

Chandler Parsons (left), Dirk Nowitzki
(Glenn James/NBAE)

Jeff Caplan, NBA.com: Dallas has no answer for Dwight inside and on the boards, no resistance for James Harden Euro-stepping into the lane or for Chandler Parson’s lining up 3s assassin style. They split the regular-season, 2-2, but only because of Houston’s keystone cops approach to big leads. The Mavs might be able to outscore the Rockets in a game or two, but over a seven-game series, the Rockets got this.

Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.com: Ask me again after the trade deadline Thursday, when rosters will be closer to locked in. But, for now, the Rockets’ offense combined with the Mavericks’ defense makes it a pretty easy call. Dallas can score, but Houston’s defense can slow the Mavs. The same cannot be said the other way around. I’d like the Rockets in five or six. How about we get to April, though? Or at least the end of the week.

John Schuhmann, NBA.com: Houston. They’re the much better defensive team and would have home-court advantage. They don’t have a great Dirk defender, but James Harden and Jeremy Lin would chew up Dallas’ perimeter defense. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the Rockets in the conference finals.

Sekou Smith, NBA.com: I like Dallas, even though I think Houston has the better overall talent. If there is one coach and staff you don’t want to see in a best of seven series where the teams are fairly equal, it’s Rick Carlisle and his crew from Dallas. I watched Carlisle and the Mavericks take apart team after team during their 2011 championship march through the Western Conference playoffs, sizing up one opponent after another, zeroing in on their weaknesses and then finishing them off with superior execution. I realize this Mavericks team is not the same savvy veteran bunch Carlisle was working with then, but I do think that he has a dangerous group to work with, regardless of who the Mavericks face in the first round.

Lang Whitaker, NBA.com All Ball blogHouston. Mainly because they’d have home court advantage and they’ve been good at home (and Dallas is .500 on the road this season). But I also feel like Houston could get Dallas into a running game against them and make it into a shootout, which is what Houston wants. Worth noting: The playoffs may not shake out this way — Houston has been playing great but has a lot of road games the rest of the way.

Akshay Manwani, NBA IndiaI’d pick Houston. The regular season is all about consistency and grinding it out while the postseason is about talent. Between an aging Dirk Nowitzki and the mercuial Monta Ellis on one side and Dwight Howard and James Harden on the other, the latter pairing is more likely to be more effective in the postseason. Also, the Rockets are better defensively (def rtg of 102.1 versus 105.1 for the Mavs). Houston for me.

Stefanos Triantafyllos, NBA GreeceI really like the Mavericks. I’ll pick them. Nowitzki plays like a teenager, Monta Ellis is looking like his old self and the trio of Calderon-Carter-Marion adds veteran leadership. They have roles, they have poise, they have what it takes to become the upset-team in this postseason.

Karan Madhok, NBA IndiaMavericks have veteran savvy and experience on their side, but I think their old legs won’t be able to hang with their free-spirited and fast-moving Texas cousins. Dwight, Harden and Co. have been on a tear recently and will only get better as they get more comfortable together. I think a playoff series between the two would definitely go in the Rockets’ favor.

8 Comments

  1. JM says:

    Dallas vs Houston? This should be a good one but I think the Rockets will defeat the Mavs in 5 games. I don’t think sweeping the Mavs is possible for the Rockets but they will win this playoff series.

  2. jdub455 says:

    I wud go wid dallas coz howard will fade in the playoffs as always (jst watch the orlando vs atlanta series) plus the mavs r a veteran team wid a hall of famer player and a good coach… adding devin harris will help them a lot come playoff time. I

  3. 태환 권 says:

    Vote Dallas~

  4. Realist2014 says:

    Comparing Dallas as it is now vs the 2011 team? Really? They had Kidd orchestrating, J J Barea aka the fire cracker, Jason Terry, Tyson Chandler, Peja (Knock Down Career 3 point shooter) all around solid D and consistant offense. They are nowhere near the team they were. The Rockets are young, Have a dominant big man and shooting guard. Chandler parsons is underrated and Terrance Jones I’ve watched him since his rookie season the guys is a beast in the making this is only his second season and I like his all around game. Lin and Beverly do a solid job only thing they need to work on is their defense. They give up too many points granted they can fill it up but I rather not have my opponent matching me in scoring.

  5. eX says:

    I got to agree’ Dallas’s couch is great. But talent wise Houston, the only way Dallas can win, if they take Harden,dweight and Parson to a night club before games

  6. MFFL says:

    Postseason isn’t all about talent. It’s also about overall defense and halfcourt offense. I would say the mavs are better in the halfcourt offense, with the rockets having slightly better defense. Would be a great series but ultimately the youth of the rockets i think will end up hurting them in the playoffs.

  7. hog says:

    I definitely would pick Rockets over Mavs. I’m still expecting Dallas to miss the playoffs, I don’t think they’ll hang on. I like Grizzlies better than them too

  8. Wade99 says:

    U still think Dallas can go into playoff in front of Memphis?