DeShawn Stevenson Will Start for Dallas in the Playoffs

by April 15, 2011

Sorry, Roddy Beaubois. But DeShawn has taken your spot in the starting lineup for the postseason. From ESPN: “Carlisle wouldn’t commit to continuing to use DeShawn Stevenson as the starting shooting guard, as was the case for most of the season while Beaubois slowly recovered from a broken foot and again in the regular-season finale. But it’s clear from listening to Carlisle and the team’s key veterans that it’s Stevenson’s job for the playoffs, while Beaubois will perhaps be a bit player off the bench. ‘Things change,’ Carlisle said. ‘And you’ve got to be judged by performance. I think the last time I said, ‘I’m sticking with this kid’ was over a week ago. Some things have changed in that period of time. That’s just the way it is.’ Actually, nothing changed for Roddy B. during that period of time. That’s the problem. Beaubois’ struggles simply continued. The trend of foul trouble didn’t end. He didn’t find his offensive rhythm, averaging only 6.7 points on .368 shooting during the previous 10 games before being benched. The poor decision making didn’t improve. And Roddy B.’s fragile confidence, which Carlisle was harshly criticized for protecting by limiting Beaubois’ playing time as a rookie, plummeted … ‘[Stevenson]’s so solid, man — just defensive presence, understands our defensive scheme, being able to knock down open shots, he’s not going to get out of his box, he’s going to make the right pass, just that person on the court that’s just solid,” center Tyson Chandler said. ‘We need more that.’ The Mavs don’t have to wonder whether Stevenson, a 6-foot-5, 232-pounder who hit half his 3-point attempts in the first two months of the season, can fit in the starting five. They have ample evidence: Dallas is 38-16 with Stevenson as a starter this season, including a 36-9 mark when Dirk Nowitzki is healthy. ‘It [sets] more of a tougher tone,’ Nowitzki said of Stephenson as a starter. ‘I always liked him, all season long. When he was starting, when Roddy was out, we had a phenomenal run there in November and December. I’m a big supporter of D-Steve. He’s just a rugged 2 guard who can guard 1s, 2s and 3s, so he’s versatile. His shot was looking really good early in the season. If he can shoot the ball like that, he’s going to be an animal for us in the playoffs.’ The Mavs haven’t given up on Beaubois. They’ve just pulled the plug on him as a starter for the playoffs.”