The Dallas Mavericks couldn’t defend their home court on Friday night against the Charlotte Hornets. In a game they desperately needed to win as they continue to fight for postseason positioning in the Western Conference, Dallas lost, 117-109, to fall to 11th place and out of the play-in tournament altogether. Perhaps even worse than the fact they now sit 36-38, the Mavs are now 3-7 in games where both Luka Doncic and prized midseason acquisition Kyrie Irving play together.
Unsurprisingly, Dallas fans weren’t happy with the performance, and they let their emotions be heard by booing in the third quarter as they trailed by as many as 18 points. After the game, Jason Kidd empathized with the fans, and said that he thought they should have expressed themselves a little earlier.
“Probably should have been booed in the first quarter,” Kidd said, per Tim MacMahon of ESPN. “Just the effort in the play, they have a right, they pay to see a better show. It wasn’t there until the second half. We can’t come out like that, especially this time of the year, but I thought, again, the guys at halftime, we made the adjustment, and we fought and put ourselves in a position to get back in the game.”
Kidd’s sentiment about getting booed was not shared by one of his stars, as Irving struck a different tone.
“So? So what? Just the way I feel about it,” Irving said. “I’ve been in New York City, so I know what that’s like. You obviously want to play well, but it’s only five people on the court that can play for the Dallas Mavericks. If the fans want to change places, then hey, be my guest. Got years of work ahead to be great enough to be on this level. But our focus isn’t necessarily on the boos. It should be on our performance and just being there for each other.”