Dallas faces off against another aging contender in a nationally televised showdown Monday night.
But while Dallas has turned their season around in the last month, Boston, a perennial Eastern Conference title contender, has stumbled to a 15-15 record, currently tied for the No. 8 seed in the East.
They've been particularly ineffective on the second night of a back-to-back this season, which is good news for the Mavericks, as Boston is coming off an ugly 96-81 loss to the lowly Detroit Pistons, which featured Rajon Rondo being thrown out of the game for tossing a ball at a referee.
Dallas, meanwhile, is coming off a narrow last-minute loss to the New York Knicks on Sunday, but because the game was played at high noon, should be more rested for Monday night's game than the Celtics.
The Mavericks, who will still be without Delonte West and Rodrigue Beaubois, got decent production from the bench tandem of Brandan Wright and Dominique Jones, who have seen their minutes rise as a result of the injuries, on their two-game Eastern Conference road trip over the weekend.
Both could have huge roles tonight against an aging Boston team that has no real counter for their athleticism.
The 7:00 PM game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN as a part of their President's Day triple-header.