We are less than two weeks away from the NBA playoffs and it's coming down to the wire, but not for the 8th seed. The Memphis Grizzlies and the Houston Rockets are separated by a half of a game. Even though the Mavericks lost last night to the Houston Rockets, it was actually for the best. The reason why is because the Rockets are a better matchup for the Dallas Mavericks. The Mavs are a sure 7th seed at this point so Mavs fans can only hope for the best. Here is the reason why the Rockets are a better matchup. Even though the Rockets have the potential league MVP, James Harden, they don't really have another scoring threat in their lineup that can hurt the Mavs. Dwight Howard should be coming back for playoff time, but being out for so long, he won't be as big of an offensive threat. I trust Tyson Chandler to hold down Dwight Howard on the block. James can be suppressed by putting Rajon Rondo or Chandler Parsons on him for the game.
On the other hand, if the Grizzlies are going to be the first round opponents, the Mavs will have a difficult time containing Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. The Mavericks lack size coming off the bench and even in the starting lineup, Dirk can't hold Zach by himself. Rondo won't be able to be the little scrappy point guard that he is because he will have his hands full with trying to guard Mike Conley. On the offensive end the Grizzlies are one of the best defenses in the league. We can't rely on Dirk every game in a potential 7-game series with Dirk and maybe Chandler Parsons having mismatches throughout the series. If the Grizzlies have Tony Allen guarding Monte Ellis, there could be some difficult times getting the ball in the rim. Hopefully the Rockets can capture the 2nd seed in the West to give the Mavs the best chance to win. They gave San Antonio a run for their money last year, we'll see how they respond this year.