The problem hasn't been the Princeton offense the Lakers installed in the off-season, as they're currently shooting 55.9% from the floor. The Mavs, who are so thin upfront they've had to rely on the newly signed Eddy Curry, seem to have resorted to the defensive strategy of fouling LA's seven-footers if they get near the basket. As long as Howard shoots 1-6 from the floor, it might work.
Kobe Bryant showed no ill-effects from a foot injury that made him a game-time decision, shooting over the smaller Dallas defenders on the perimeter to score 10 points on 5-6 shooting.
The Mavs used a balanced offensive attack to get ahead, with 8 different players scoring in the game's first 24 minutes. The most surprising name on that list may Jae Crowder, their second-round pick out of Marquette, who took advantage of early playing time to score 8 points, including 2 three-pointers.