The Dallas Mavericks lost to the Toronto Raptors 103-99 on Tuesday evening. That’s not that terrible of a score, right? Losing by four points to a very good Raptors squad shouldn’t ignite Rick Carlisle‘s anger. Except, that score doesn’t tell the whole story. The Raptors blitzed the Mavericks in the first quarter, scoring 14 of the game’s first 16 points and at one point holding an 18-point lead.
Carlisle did not hold back after the game, even threatening some players’ jobs, according to James Herbert of CBS Sports.
“Do I look happy?” he said. “I mean, would you be happy? Look, it was a 24-minute, take-you-to-the-beach, kick-your-butt, kick-sand-in-your-face type deal. And then, hey, we come in at halftime and we’re finally pissed, I get on their case and we decide to bust our ass in the third quarter. And we played a hell of a third quarter. But, look, if it’s going to be like that, these guys aren’t going to be Mavericks very long. I can promise you that.”
Carlisle’s never been one to mince words, but the fury here is almost palpable. If there’s one thing any coach hates, it’s a lack of effort. It’s more unforgivable than missing a defensive assignment or turning the ball over. Coaches are fine with mistakes – every player makes them, after all – but they’ll never excuse a player who simply doesn’t try hard. Carlisle praised the effort of the bench, and wants his starters to emulate that engagement for an entire game.
The Mavs currently sit at a surprising fifth in the Western Conference, and even though no one picked them to even be in the playoff picture, Carlisle isn’t satisfied (a coach never is, sadly). Hopefully, the players get his message. If they don’t, we could be looking at a few new starters for the squad.
(Via CBS Sports)