Rockets-Mavericks: Let’s go to the numbers

– Since the opening round went to best-of-seven, number two seeds hold a 23-1 series record. The only loss by a two seed in either conference in that time was Dallas losing in six games to seven seed San Antonio.

– The Rockets and Mavericks have met twice before in the playoffs, with the Mavericks winning both series. In 1988, Dallas topped the Houston in the first round, 3-1. The only game the Rockets won in that series was game 2, when both Hakeem Olajuwon (41) and Sleepy Floyd (42) topped the 40-point mark. That was only the second time in NBA playoff history with two teammates scoring 40 points or more. The previous occurrence was in 1962, when Elgin Baylor (45) and Jerry West (41) did it with Los Angeles at Detroit (3/19/62) in Game Four of the Western Semifinals (Pistons won, 118-117). It has happened twice since Floyd and Olajuwon did it in 1988. Olajuwon was involved once again as Clyde Drexler (41) and Olajuwon (40) did it vs. Utah in Game Four in the first round with Houston winning 123-106 (5/5/95).  Pacers’ teammates Reggie Miller (40) and Jalen Rose (40) did it in Game One of the eastern conference semifinals in 2000 (Pacers won 108-91).

Dallas beat Houston again in 2005, 4-3, including a 40-point win in game seven in Dallas, 116-76. Both Mavericks series victories came as the better seed. In 1988, Dallas was the 3 seed and in 2005, Dallas was the 4 seed.

– Since 2010-11, home teams in the first round have seen their winning percentage drop each season.
’10-11: 46-19 (.708)
’11-12: 57-27 (.679)
’12-13: 54-31 (.635)
’13-14: 52-37 (.584)

– Only two of the 16 playoff teams went undefeated in overtime games this regular season. Dallas was 6-0 and their first round opponent, Houston, went 5-0.

– Houston was second in the league in fast break points per game (18.73), while the Mavericks allowed the second most fast break points per game (15.87).

Houston may not be able to exploit that advantage since they allowed 15.28 fast break points per game, which was third most in the league and the Mavericks offense was just a couple of spots back of Houston, scoring 15.97 fast break points per game, good for fifth in the league.

– Craziest of crazy stats: Rockets allowed opponents to shoot better than 44.7 percent from the floor in exactly half their games. Houston was 16-25 in those games. So when opponent shot 44.7 percent or less, Houston was an astounding 40-1. The one loss? Yep, the Lakers. Los Angeles beat Houston, 98-92 on November 19, despite shooting just 40.7 percent. Houston won their last 36 games when holding their opponents to 44.7 percent shooting or worse.

Houston held Dallas to 44.7 shooting or worse three times – they won all three games. Dallas shot above 44.7 percent once against Houston and won that game.

– Dallas was 26-20 (.565) in games they played with Rondo and 24-12 (.667) in games he missed or were played prior to his arrival.  Boston was 8-14 (.348) in games Rondo played, then 32-28 (.533) in games he missed and after he was traded. So when Rondo played his team won exactly half their games (34-34), but when he didn’t play, they were 56-40 (.583).

– When Mavericks forward Charlie Villanueva checks into a game in this series, he’ll take his name of the top of the list of active players with most games played without playing in a aplayoff game. He’s in in 594 games without a playoff appearance, which was fourth most on the all-time list. Jason Thompson (Sac) with now top the list with 541 games played with no playoff appearances. Teammate Al-Farouq Aminu was eighth on the list with 377 games played.

– Dwight Howard and Tyson Chandler are the two most accurate field goal shooters in the playoffs among active players. Howard is number one at 59.4 percent, while Chandler is next at 55.8 percent. Chandler’s teammate Amar’e Stoudemire is seventh on the list at 51.4 percent.

Stoudemire is also fifth among players in this year’s postseason in points per game at 21.8. His teammate Dirk Nowitzki is second at 25.6 points, trailing only LeBron James (28.0). (minimum 25 games or 625 points)

– In his playoff career, Trevor Ariza boasts a 44.2 percent shooting mark  (73-165) behind the 3-point line. That’s second-best among active players (Danny Green, 44.8 percent). Ariza was 25-of-56 (.446) on 3-pointers last season in 11 playoff games with Washington and posted a 62.6 true shooting percentage, the best of any of his five trips to the postseason.

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