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Mavericks Vs. Suns: Game Preview, TV Info And More

Dallas begins their first of three games in three nights as they travel to face Steve Nash and the Suns in Phoenix on Thursday.

With the NBA lockout forcing the league to cram 66 games into 4 months, every team in the NBA has gotten the short end of the stick in scheduling at some point.

Now, it's Dallas' turn, as the Mavericks begin a stretch of three games in three nights against the Phoenix Suns on Thursday.

With Delonte West out for another month and Brandan Wright and Brendan Haywood questionable, the back-to-back-to-back will severely strain Dallas' limited depth.

The Mavericks will need consistent offense from Rodrigue Beaubois and Lamar Odom off the bench and they'll need Shawn Williams, Brian Cardinal and Yi Jianlian to steal minutes on the interior. With so many players above the age of 32, Dallas can't afford to have any of the 12 players on the active roster not contributing over the next three nights.

Phoenix, who has flown under the radar most of the season, has a 17-21 record with a -2.0 point differential on the season and they are three games out of the No. 8 seed in the West.

As a result, the trade rumors around Suns star Steve Nash, who is a free agent this summer, have increased, although both Nash and the team have strongly denied interest in parting ways at the deadline.

Dallas will try to get out to an early lead against Phoenix, as they'll need their legs for the rest of this brutal trip while Nash can still steal a game in the final two minutes.

The 9:30 PM game will be nationally televised on TNT.

For more on the Mavericks, head over to Mavs Moneyball while Bright Side of the Sun has all the pre-game angles from Phoenix covered.

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