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Lack of effort sinking Mavericks lower

Vanishing defense at root of troubles, which now include home defeat to lowly Wolves

Updated: February 6, 2010, 1:51 AM ET
By Tim MacMahon | ESPNDallas.com

DALLAS -- The Dallas Mavericks, losers of four of the last five games, have a long list of problems right now.

Two stand out above all the others: They aren't good enough and don't play hard enough. And there's no chicken-and-the-egg debate about those issues.

"We're not going to be good until we play hard," coach Rick Carlisle said after Friday night's 117-108 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Yep, the Western Conference's last-place team walked out of the American ...

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