Dallas coach Rick Carlisle became the 18th coach in NBA history with 700 wins on Saturday as the Mavericks pounded the Los Angeles Clippers 108-82.
Carlisle joined San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich and Clippers coach Doc Rivers as the only active coaches with at least 700 career wins.
“I really wasn’t counting, to tell you the truth,” Carlisle said. “It just means that I’ve been very fortunate. I’ve had three great owners and a lot of great players.
“I really had never been one to count that kind of stuff. As time goes on, I count those things even less.”
Instead, Carlisle was more concerned with a dominant performance by his team, who notched just their sixth win of a season against 17 defeats.
The Mavericks jumped to an 8-0 lead that they never surrendered. They connected on 45.7 percent of their three-point shots and out-rebounded Los Angeles 54-38.
JJ Barea scored 15 of his 21 points and handed out seven of his 10 assists in the second quarter as the Mavericks pushed to a 59-38 halftime lead.
The Mavericks’ talismanic German big man Dirk Nowitzki was a perfect five-of-five from three-point range and added a free throw for 16 points.
“It’s 15 points on five shots, which is pretty high efficiency,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. “It does a lot, because it certainly stretches out the defense.”
The Clippers, meanwhile, connected on just 34.9 percent of their shots from the field and made just six of their 22 three-point attempts.
“Early on the scorers that we have couldn’t score,” Rivers said. “I really thought it was more of an offensive issue, but the defense has to be better.
“But it gets so frustrating when you’re on defense all game. That’s how it felt,” added Rivers, who was patching together a lineup in the absence of injured Blake Griffin, Patrick Beverley, Danilo Gallinari and Milos Teodosic.
For the Mavericks, the victory helped wash out the taste of a disappointing 109-104 home loss to Brooklyn on Wednesday.
“I thought we bounced back from really a below-average defensive performance against Brooklyn,” Carlisle said. “Early on we missed some shots and we had a couple of uncharacteristic turnovers, but it never affected our defensive force or disposition, and that’s what we’ve got to have.”