After surviving a 2OT thriller with LaMarcus Aldridge and the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday, the Dallas Mavericks host another up-and-coming Western Conference power with an All-Star PF on Monday when Blake Griffin and the LA Clippers come into town.
With the aging front-court of Dirk Nowitzki and Brendan Haywood unable to defend him, Aldridge dominated the action for most of the game Saturday, scoring 33 points and grabbing 11 rebounds while hitting game-tying shots in the final seconds of both regulation and the first OT.
Griffin, whose aerial acrobatics have been one of the highlights of an often dreary lockout-compressed regular season, could be in line for an equally dominant performance. Dallas will likely play their reserve center tandem of Ian Mahinmi and Brandan Wright more, as both have much more spring in their legs than the 260-pound 32-year old Haywood.
Former Maverick Caron Butler will be making his first return back to the American Airlines Center in an enemy uniform, as the 31-year old small forward is averaging 15 points and 4 rebounds on 44% shooting in his first year in LA.
Dallas will be counting on a big game for Delonte West on both sides of the ball, as they will need the 6'3 combo guard to match up with the Clippers tandem of 6'0 point guards -- Chris Paul and Mo Williams -- on the perimeter.
Paul was out in the first game between the two this season, a 91-89 loss decided on a buzzer-beating three-pointer by Chauncey Billups, who will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL. Williams led LA with 26 points off the bench, shooting 11-15 from the field.
The 7:30 PM game will be televised regionally on Fox Sports Net Southwest.