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- Mavericks forward Shawn Marion will play in his 1,000th regular-season game tonight, becoming the 107th player in NBA history to reach that plateau. Marion played his first 660 games with the Suns, his opponent tonight. Dallas coach Rick Carlisle reflected on the career of “The Matrix.” “He’s had a remarkable career. He’s had a major-impact career. … Look at what he did statistically in Phoenix and what he’s done here in terms of our championship year, and how he injects his stamp on a game — defensively, offensively, rebounding, guarding a guy late in the game. All those kinds of things,” Carlisle said. “It’s remarkable. He’s a unique player.”
- Marion isn’t the only Mavericks player marking a milestone tonight. It is the 900th regular-season appearance for center Elton Brand, and forward Dirk Nowitzki needs 12 points to pass Allen Iverson (24,368) for 18th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
- Carlisle indicated that Rodrigue Beaubois would be the primary backup to point guard Darren Collison after scoring a season-high 19 points in Friday’s loss to San Antonio. “We want him to do the same thing,” Carlisle said. “When I say the same thing, I don’t mean score more than a point a minute. I mean get out there and have a dynamic, athletic impact on the game.”
- The Suns are trying to avoid their 10th consecutive loss at the American Airlines Center. Their last victory in Dallas was a 129-127 double-overtime decision on March 14, 2007. It is their longest active road losing streak against any opponent. Interim coach Lindsey Hunter knows his team has to play better in the fourth quarter to be successful. In Phoenix’s last 15 losses, the team has averaged just 18.5 points in the fourth.
– Dave Ivey