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NBA Standings 2012: Mavericks Holding Onto Sixth Seed

The defending NBA champion Dallas Mavericks are still in line to defend their 2011 title. Mark Cuban's team sits in third place in the Southwest Division, four and a half games behind the first-place Spurs -- and percentage points behind the Memphis Grizzles for second place in the division.

Still, Dallas' 26-20 mark is currently good enough to earn the sixth seed in the Western Conference. If the season ended today, the Mavericks would have to face the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the playoffs, who would undoubtedly be looking for revenge for Dallas' thrashing of them last year.

The Mavs play four games this week, so they'll have ample opportunity coming up to improve their record and climb both the division and conference standings. Dallas visits Denver on Monday, before coming home to host the Lakers on Wednesday before headed on the road again Friday and Saturday to take on the Spurs and Rockets.

Dallas' games against Denver and Houston will be quite important, as both teams trail the Mavericks in the conference standings, with the Nuggets trailing by just half a game, and the Rockets only by a game and a half.

For more on the Dallas Mavericks and their title defense, head over to Mavs Moneyball.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.