Beat the Heat! That’s a phrase with a double meaning now in Dallas. What a ride these playoffs have been. From such low expectations this season after the debacle of 2006 and playoff failure after failure from the loss to 8th seed Golden State the following season to the San Antonio loss in 2010.
By taking a 3-2 series lead in the NBA Finals the Dallas Mavericks have effectively erased the horror of the 2006 finals. One more win and it’s buried forever – vindication will be theirs.
Flu-like symptoms and a fever of 102 degrees? The Dirk-i-nator has not time for such things. The Dallas Mavericks again played from behind for most of the game but managed to take another victory with clutch fourth quarter performances by Jason Terry and Dirk Nowitzki. Center Tyson Chandler’s 13 point and 16 rebound contribution helped keep the Mavericks close and prevented the Heat from continuing to dominate the offensive boards after nabbing nine in the first quarter.
Falling behind in the series and ceding home court back to the Miami Heat has the Dallas Mavericks in a tough position. They must solve the Heat tonight and even the series at two games apiece.
Obviously, the next two games are must wins for the Mavericks – they simply must get back to Miami up 3-2 for any hope of taking the championship.
Is a full season in the offing after all? A cadre of owners, players and NFL and union officials met secretly from Tuesday evening to Thursday afternoon so perhaps there is yet hope. Official meetings resume today.
Dirk’s only 3 pointer with 27 seconds remaining gave the Mavericks their first lead since the second quarter and his drive to the basket sealed the deal with 3 seconds to go. The funniest part? Wade’s flop fail on his desperation attempt at the end. Oh, I loved that. For once, the referees got one right.