Mavs Win Game 5 – Take Series Lead
The Dallas Mavericks are closer to winning an NBA championship than they ever have been before. They lead the series 3-2 heading back to Miami for games 6 and 7.
It was a statement game last night for the Dallas Mavericks. If they didn't come away with a win at home, they would be faced with having to win two games on the road in Miami against a team that has been perfect at home this post season. So Dallas pulled out the stops and pull out a 112-103 win to take a 3-2 series lead.
One of the biggest factors in this win for Dallas was the way they played in the fourth quarter. They outscored Miami 17-4 in the final 4 minutes of the game. They also shot great from 3 point range, draining 13 in total last night. That is just one shy of the NBA record for threes in an NBA final (14 set by bot the 1995 Rockets and Magic). Their outside shooting has been how they have gone ahead to win games all season, so it was nice to see them get back into form.
The Miami Heat look tired. They look like the Chicago Bulls did in the eastern conference finals. You can only go so long playing at this level. A veteran team like Dallas knows that playoff minutes are much more strenuous than regular season minutes. The young Miami team has yet to realize that. The Heat bench did keep them in the game, but head coach Eric Spoelstra needs to rest Lebron James more often if he wants to keep his team in this. Not to count out the Heat by any means. They have the home court advantage for the last two games and could very well win both.
Dirk Nowitzki was once again fantastic with a 29 point performance. Jason Terry was obviously irked by the comments made by Nowitzki about how he wasn't performing the way they needed him to. He put up 21 points including a huge 3 near the end of the fourth quarter. That's the clutch performer we are use to. JJ Barea was also huge for the Mavs last night with 17 points.
If the Heat don't walk away from this with a championship, it will define Lebrons career. He has accomplished so much and is only 26, but when people look back they will see only a few things. The way he quit the series against Boston in the 2010 playoffs, the "decision", and his lack of energy at the end of this series against Dallas. Now this could all be erased if he comes out and is a big player in games 6 and 7. When you look at great players like Charles Barkley, John Stockton, Reggie Miller and Patrick Ewing, sure we talk about their accomplishments, but they are more remembered for being in a class of great players to never win a ring.
Prediction is that the Dallas Mavericks win this thing in 7. The Miami Heat won't roll over easy on their home court, but right now Dallas is playing with such confidence that they will win the one game they need too in Miami to give Dirk that career defining championship.