Collison vs. Lillard was not exactly how this was billed coming in. The Blazers rookie is garnering some well-deserved accolades for his strong play. However, it was Darren Collison who was the superior point guard on the floor in Monday's 114-91 Dallas Mavericks win. Lillard scored 13 points and had five assists. Collison, on the other hand, notched a double-double with 14 points and 13 dimes.
The Mavericks were also 17 points better than the Blazers with Collison on the floor while Portland was 12 points worse while Lillard was in the game.
DONUT 2: Batman and Robin? ...
With 30 points in back-to-back games, despite being the clear focus of the Mavs' offense, OJ Mayo has staked his claim to being the long sought-after "Robin" to occupy the sidecar alongside
Dirk Nowitzki's "Batman."
While Jason Terry had been an elite-level offensive weapon for much of the Dirk-era, Terry never possessed the diversity of skill that was on display for Mayo in the past two games. Yes, yes, it's a small sample size. But handles, passing, getting to the rim ... this is a more prototypical 2-guard and so far there is little not to like.
Mayo is killing it from the perimeter. He made a career high seven 3-pointers in the home opener against Charlotte on Saturday and here was 6-of-8 from the arc -- a fun way to celebrate his 25th birthday.
"You can't get a loss on your birthday,'' said OJ. "It'll kinda mess up the night."
With a game-high 32 points, OJ's work marks the fourth time he's posted back-to-back 30-point games in his career -- but it's the first time he's done so since February 2009. In these two games, he's shooting 63 percent from the field and 72 percent from the arc.
"I like how he's playing under control,'' coach Rick Carlisle said. "He's getting better and better. We're watching film virtually after every game of his touches and his defensive stuff. He's a sponge. He wants to be as good as he can possibly be. He's showing it. Even on nights when shots aren't falling in like they are now, he's giving us a really good all around effort on both ends."
One would expect that upon Dirk's return, Mayo's opportunities, fitted in properly and in "Flow,'' should be just a little bit better.
Donald Trump hasn't taken kindly to Mark Cuban's offer that the Don shave his head in exchange for a $1 million charity donation. This of course was in response to Trump's offer to President Obama of $5 million in donations if Obama would release his college applications and records.
You can see the back-and-forth on Chuck Perry's Twitter timeline with highlights of the spat including Trump calling Cuban a "dummy," and "not a star" (unlike Trump himself, presumably). Trump also looked down his nose at Cuban's offer calling it not "real money.'' (We're sure any charity would believe it "real" enough).
Cuban was not impressed with the Donald's insults and mock-recalled his childhood with Trump in Kenya. Of course, the mention of the African nation was used to bait Trump into reaffirming his position on the "Birther" conspiracy.
At some point, we hope the fellas donate what they can ... and we sense somewhere in here a motivation that also has to do with TV-show promotion. Or are we being too cynical?
DONUT 4: JKidd Infusing Knicks with BBIQ? ...
The New York Knicks are 2-0, and are the oldest team in the league, with an average age of 33.
Adding a 39-year-old Kidd will certainly bring up the average age of any squad not playing in The Retirement Home Sunday Afternoon League, but there's tangible evidence that Kidd's presence is already making the Knicks a smarter team. Right now, the Knicks are averaging nearly two assists more per game than last year (though it's a small sample size).
It may get more difficult to maintain this ball movement when Amare Stoudemire returns from injury, but Kidd's early impact is being felt on the other Knicks' star forward, Carmello Anthony.
Indeed, the other night, ‘Melo actually passed the ball to a teammate.
After Dallas plays Toronto at the AAC on Wednesday, the Mavs engage in a back-to-back roadie that begins at New York on Friday. We'll get a chance to see Kidd vs. Collison with the pregame show at 6 p.m. on FoxSportsSouthwest featuring Fish and Bob Ortegel throwing it to New York where a hopefully-healed Mark Followill awaits!
Roddy B (ankle) did not play Tuesday, opening up a spot for DoJo -- who played second-half defense well enough to have Rick label him "the key to the game.'' Meanwhile, Shawn Marion went down with a leg injury after 24 effective minutes and did not return. Media availability at Mavs practice is just after noon Tuesday ... Check here on DB.com Boards and with Fish on Twitter for immediate updates.
DONUT 8: The highlights package ...
What you see there? For the second straight games, lotsa made shots. In fact, the Mavs have shot above 60 percent in two consecutive games for the first time in franchise history.
The combined shooting percentage in the two games? A stunning 61.4 percent.
DONUT 9: Healthy and hot ...
Chris Kaman can't miss.
He nailed his first six shots against the Blazers on Monday, showing off some very graceful post moves, and finished with 16 points. He did it on 8-of-10 shooting. ... and if that sounds familiar, it's because Kaman had 16 points in his first game back from the calf injury against Charlotte on Saturday. The Kaveman is now shooting 84.2 percent, 16-of-19, from the floor.
And, it turns out, he's not completely healthy.
"Honestly, it feels like someone has kicked me in the back of my leg,'' said Kaman, who came off the bench behind the springy and effective B-Wright here but projects as the eventual starter at center. "I'm still working with the trainers and they have really been helping me and I'm taking care of it, icing it and doing everything I'm supposed to do. Right now, I think the calf is healed but there's still some swelling in that area."
And he's doing something else: As an Election Time Special, he's helping DB.com with a project that we're putting the finishing touches on right now:
"Citizen Kaman on Why Texas Should Secede From The Union.'' ... coming up for Premium Mavs Fans!
DONUT 10: Stretch your legs ...
Last night's game began a difficult stretch of nine games in 14 days for Dallas. (Though the stretch begins with that Raptors visit on Wednesday.) If the first week of the regular season without Dirk was a pop quiz, consider this upcoming stretch something closer to an SAT. (Even with the certain "softness'' of the opponents.)
With the exception of one sluggish second half in Utah, 3-1 Dallas is certainly passing the test, though, of obeying Carlisle's defensive commands and then being rewarded with the fun of offensive "Flow.''
"It's like organized street ball,'' OJ said. "We have spots that we need to fill and just keep moving ... It just opens it up for shooters. It's kind of unguardable because we don't do something constant or something you can scout. It's pretty much read the defense and work off that."
RIP, Jim Durham. A great talent, a great gentleman and an early supporter of DB.com (Jim volunteered to appear along with Cuban and Nash in a 2000 TV commercial for DallasBasketball.com) ... he will be greatly missed.