Mavs.com: Notebook -- Harris calling out plays
Art Garcia | Mavs.com
Posted: Oct. 11, 2007
The trust developed between Point Guard Coach and Point Guard Player extends to play calling. The practice of Avery Johnson barking out plays and Devin Harris looking back to the bench has been put on hold.
At least for now.
“Strictly by design,” Johnson explained Thursday after practice. “I would say for about the first five games of the preseason I’m going to sit over there and talk to Coach Westphal about his Hall-of-Fame days with the Celtics or the Suns.”
Really? “There will be no looking over because he’s not going to call anything,” Harris assured.
Johnson’s had to resist the urge a few times Thursday night against San Antonio to cut off his chats with Paul Westphal and make a call.
“Five times in the last game,” Johnson admitted, “but Coach Westphal was holding me back. That’s what he’s here for.”
So how did Harris do against the Spurs? “I’ve got no complaints so far,” he said. Harris added the breakdown the last couple years has been Harris calling the plays for the first three quarters and Johnson taking over in the fourth.
Avery Johnson has instituted a new routine throughout preseason – rotating captains for each game. The qualifications: Bust your tail in practice and in games. Josh Howard earned his “C” for Friday night at Chicago.
Two will be elected for each game. The team and the coaching staff will vote at the end of the preseason on captains for the regular season. Sounds like an opportunity to set up a “Dancing with the Stars” voting system.
“Maybe some of those guys who really want it, we’ll have a number that you can dial in,” Johnson quipped.
Brandon Bass’ first game in a Mavs uniform went pretty well. He finished tallied 10 points (5-12 FGs) and seven rebounds Tuesday against San Antonio. All of the points and five of the boards came in the second half.
“I had to get comfortable out there, but that came when I played a little bit,” he said. “I haven’t really played much over the last two years so it felt really good to be out there playing some minutes.”
Bass (6-8, 240) spent his first two season with the Hornets before signing with Dallas. Avery Johnson calls the rock-solid power forward the “Animal.”
“Bass is pretty much what we thought he is,” Johnson said. “He’s a strong player, inside and out – pretty strong rebounder, just a physical presence. Hopefully, you just saw a dose of what you’ll be seeing all year.”
Jason Terry could start at shooting guard (2) or come off the bench there and at the point (1) behind Devin Harris. Avery Johnson wants to keep people guessing, as evident in this quote about Terry.
“We still like him at 2,” Johnson said. “He and Devin playing together is really a nice combination, like I’ve been saying. When they are exclusively 1s, we think we can have one of the better combinations in the league.”
That doesn’t clear anything up . . . and Johnson likes it that way.
• One of the three point guards -- Devin Harris, Jason Terry or Jose Barea – won’t play against Chicago, Avery Johnson said.
• The team has its annual meeting with NBA game officials shootaround Friday in Chicago. They’ll discuss rules changes and points of emphasis for the upcoming season