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Carlisle: Mavs have to be tougher

Players deny being soft, but coach miffed after team blows 7-point lead with 1:13 left

Updated: March 10, 2011, 3:17 PM ET
By Jeff Caplan | ESPNDallas.com

NEW ORLEANS -- Frustrated after watching his team bungle a 10-point bulge heading into the fourth quarter and then spit up a seven-point lead with 1:13 to go courtesy of multiple errors, Rick Carlisle pulled no punches, and perhaps even dropped one on his club below the belt.

"Soft," Carlisle said of his team after a disappointing 93-92 loss to a slumping New Orleans Hornets team that kept pushing even without its concussed floor leader Chris Paul.

"Yeah," the coach reiterated, "soft."

That ...

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