Tuesday's NBA slate features four games. The 4-3 Miami Heat tip things off against the visiting Bucks; The Washington Wizards travel to Dallas in part of its Midwest road trip; The struggling Detroit Pistons face the sluggish Golden State Warriors; and the Lakers get another shot at Anthony Davis and the Pelicans.
Milwaukee Bucks vs. Miami Heat
7:30 p.m. ET; League Pass
The last time the Heat took the floor at American Airlines Arena, Celtics forward Jeff Green hit a miraculous fade-away three-point game winner as time expired. Thus far, Miami has been a tale of two different teams: The Heat are pile-driving teams with the best offense in the NBA. They are scoring a ridiculous 112.8 points per 100 possessions through seven games. But Miami is the No. 27 defense, surrendering 108.2 points per 100 possessions, all stats per Basketball-Reference.
The Heat defense should bounce back against Milwaukee, who has failed to score more than 90 points in each of its three losses on the season. Bucks guard O.J. Mayo is quietly having a nice start to the season with per game averages of 19/5/4 on 47 percent from the floor and 57 percent from range. Milwaukee has hit the injury bug early with LARRY SANDERS! out for six weeks and Carlos Delfino likely out for the season.
Detroit Pistons vs. Golden State Warriors
10:30 p.m. ET; NBA TV
Who would you expect if I told you that one of these teams has excelled on offense and the other has excelled on defense? You'd certainly think Golden State is the superior offensive team with its stable of shooters, right? And that Detroit's offensive spacing issues would stagnate the scoring and that it would thrive off defense? Well, that's not what has happened early.
The Warriors, per Basketball-Reference, are actually the third-best defensive team in the NBA and Detroit is the sixth-best offensive team. The Warriors, without Stephen Curry, struggled last Friday night to score against the Spurs, posting just 74 points in a loss. On Saturday, in Curry's return, the team registered just 90 points in a loss against the Grizzlies.
The Pistons, with an offensive rating of 107, are scoring by committee with six players scoring in double figures through the first six games. Three players -- Brandon Jennings, Greg Monroe and Josh Smith -- are registering 17-plus a night. Smith, however, is still taking horrible shots, because he is J-Smoove and that is the J-Smoove thing to do. Relevant:
Only Steph Curry and Damian Lillard are attempting more threes per game than Josh Smith.— Tyler Lashbrook (@lashy) November 10, 2013
Washington Wizards vs. Dallas Mavericks
8:30 p.m. ET; League Pass
The Mavericks are dominating at home. That's not an exaggeration. They are 3-0 averaging 117.3 points per contest. They are dominating. A Rick Carlisle coached team is typically known for its defense, but this Mavericks team is thriving off a newly efficient Monta Ellis who is posting the highest PER (19.2) of his career. Dirk Nowitizki is chipping in 21 points per game and Dallas looks like a worthy playoff team through seven games.
Washington is coming off two straight overtime games. They pulled out a late victory against Brooklyn last Friday and lost a heartbreaker in Oklahoma City on Sunday. John Wall, though struggling from the field, is scoring 18 points per game and dishing out nearly 10 assists. Bradley Beal is posting 21 points a night and Marcin Gortat, still adjusting from being traded, is averaging a double-double. The Wizards don't appear to be a playoff threat but they are a tough out on a nightly basis.
10:30 p.m. ET; League Pass
The Lakers rank in the bottom third in both offensive and defensive efficiency and only three players -- Jodie Meeks, Chris Kaman and Jordan Hill -- are posting above average PERs. In other words, the Lakers have probably overachieved in winning three games. To the opposite effect, New Orleans has underachieved in its 3-4 start. The Pelicans have the 13th-best offense and the 10th-best defense and, aside from a whopping from the Orlando Magic, have been in a position to win every game.
Anthony Davis is leading the way for the young pelicans with 22 points, 12 rebounds, four blocks, two steals and two assists nightly. In last Friday night's matchup against the Lakers, the second-year big man out of Kentucky dropped 32 points, 12 rebounds and six blocks. It was a coming out party for Davis who is solidifying himself as a budding young superstar.
Also, this happened: