24 Hour Rule. Focus should be Game 6.
The day is here. The most crucial game ever played is here. For Dallas, it is a hope to carry the dream for 48 more hours.
Just Do it.
Here is a huge load of your emails (as I perhaps violate the 24 Hour rule):
I'm not happy about the call on Wade, but I'd like to point some things out to the Mavs fans, maybe you as you often are the voice of reason can echo these sentiments.
Maybe now we realize it's not a good idea to squander a 13 point lead late in the 4th quarter in a game 3 that might as well be game 4 for all practical purposes. It might have been nice for the Mavericks to bother to show up for game 4, just a thought there.
You throw 2 games away and than expect everything to go your way in game 5, on the Heat's home court you need to visit your psychiatrist because you're thinking straight anymore.
So let's do that. The Knicks couldn't go on the road and win that deciding game against Houston in 1994, and the Mavericks for the first time all series have the full roster available MBenga and Stackhouse, we're at home. Maybe Dirk will take that anger on the exercise bike out on the Heat for game 6, and we can look forward to a game 7!
You absolutely amaze me, and it makes me insane to hear your opinions on this, Mr. Sturm. I was just listening to your broadcast on my way in to the office.
First of all, the man is NOT Jordan. He makes a few baskets (hell, he made a LOT of buckets in the last 3- ok!) That does NOT make him a super-star.
Second, Dwyane Wade CANNOT go to the basket at will and change the game by himself. He simply could not have done what he did, without other players AND THE REFS interfering! Granted, he is a very good player, and his moves to drive the lane are very impressive. However, the man would be NOWHERE if he did not have Shaq's interior presence (as we saw in his mediocre performances in games 1 and 2).
Third, and what angers me most, is your notion that the referees are somehow drawn inseparably to the magnetic personality of Wade, that somehow there is this hypnotic force out there that is pulling them to "don't resist, all is well in Wade's World", and that makes them make every call in Dwyane's direction. "Use the force, Dwyane, right?" And all the while, they don't seem to have any regard for our very own Dirk Nowitzki. DIRK IS THE ALL-STAR HERE!!!! He is the player that ought to be getting ALL of the calls and ALL of the latitude from the refs. I have not seen that in a single game.
As a referee (I ref at the junior high and high school levels), I know that if there is ANYTHIHNG that is true in the waning seconds of games, it is that if you don't see an obvious foul call in those last few seconds, you SWALLOW YOUR WHISTLE!!!! I challenge you to find any official out there who does not call games with that in mind. The unspoken rule is that you NEVER blow your whistle and decide a game by a call that could be even remotely seen as ticky-tack or as tentative. Having said that, I don't see how you can make the case that the officials last night did any semblance of a good job.
Fourth, you mentioned that Wade had to get the ball in the backcourt in order to make sure that he got the ball. Even that goes back to the officials, because he had not established position in the backcourt when he received the ball. Watch the tape and prove me wrong- I dare you! The play should have been called dead immediately, Mavs ball, here we go- they score and it is GAME OVER!!!!
Having said all of this, all I can conclude from seeing the last three games is that there is definitely an anti-Dallas bias in the NBA, for whatever reason, whether it comes from David Stern's dislike of Cuban, or from a desire to see it go to seven, or what, I do not know. It is just disgusting. Just disgusting.
[ Unfortunately, I most probably will not hear the rest of your broadcast today, so I may not hear if you respond to this. If you have a chance to e-mail me back, I would like to hear what you have to say, as I usually agree with what you say on air. But on this one, Bob, you missed the boat! ]
Congrats to you... you are seeing game 5 and this series for what it is. Dwayne Wade is definitely a "star" and he is getting those calls that Jordan did in the 90's - anyone remember the push off Byron Russell in the clincher against Utah? Was there a foul on the final play - there was enough to call it. Should it have been on Dirk, probably not, but, does it really matter if it is Harris or Dirk? Also, Wade has been building this reputation for 3 years in the playoffs now, it didn't just happen in game 3, 4, and 5 of the 2006 Finals.
Also, remember the phantom foul that Dirk got during the San Antonio series - the calls balance out. Craig talked about that this morning.
Thanks for taking off the Mavs jersey and seeing things how they are. As much as you want the Mavs to win, you are able to see things how they are, and not get caught up in hype. Keep up the good work. And don't be surprised if the Mavs win 2 - the NBA works in strange ways.
Fellow Northern Transplant... Brad
Don't fret about messing up the Mavs' chemistry when the circuit breaker blew....That had nothing to do with the Mavs losing Game 5.....nor did the fact that I decided to take a shower right before the end of the 3rd quarter....The outcome of these Finals was decided in Game 4 when Dallas chose to score only SEVEN FRICKING POINTS in the 4th quarter.....There is absolutely NO WAY the NBA Gods would EVER EVER EVER allow a team to win a championship after securing the dubious honor of setting an all time low for points scored in a quarter in the NBA Finals.
Gimme a Diablo sandwich and a Dr. Pepper and make it quick cause I'm in a @#$*&@#*$#@#& hurry.....
Against Miami, the Mavs are 0-2 when Josh Howard scores 20+ points. The relationship between J-Ho’s 20 and a Mavs “W”,that was as consistent as gravity, has been reversed.
Look at this NBA finals preview by the Sports Guy. He summed up the entire series right here. This was before the finals.
“And that’s the thing that bothers me about this series: No team depends on the refs quite like the Heat. When the refs are calling all the bumps on Shaq and protecting Wade on every drive, they’re unstoppable. When they’re calling everything fairly, they’re eminently beatable. If they’re not getting any calls, they’re just about hopeless. I could see the refs swinging two games in Miami’s favor during this series, possibly three.”
Humble P1 Pat
Here's why I'm not panicing about the Mavs still:
It occurs to me that it's good for the home team to win as often as possible.
Although the Mavs have had their chances to "steal" a game or two, it benefits the NBA to be more generous with the Heat in Miami for example.
But, the Mavs have long proven that they can beat anybody anywhere and won't need much of the same of the refs' generosity to beat the Heat at home.
This "fix", if you will, became incredibly obvious to me when more than a few camera shots late in the game showed Shaq not even sweating, and Wade cracking a smile or two.
I hate to blame anyone (like the refs) or anything else (like an away-crowd) but it was ultimately the Mavs lack of go-for-the-jugular mentality that proved to be their demise.
Paul in Flower Mound
Just wanted to say that given the recent events in the NBA finals I'm finding it amazing that you were one of the few to take the stance you did back after game 2. I'm not one to call in or email much, and I'm not a big follower of the NBA, but I was left talking to my radio a few times while listening to pretty much all the other shows on The Ticket after game 1 & 2.
I'm still shocked that somehow the fact that game 1 was actually pretty close and favored the Mavs because of bad free throw shooting yet by game 2 we had people on The Ticket saying things like "I can't see what Miami can hope to do against the Mavs". It was so bad after game 2 that I was suddenly reminded of two Saturday Night Live skits. The talk on The Ticket was pretty much like a cross between the Chris Farley celebrity interview skit and the old Bears Ditka skits. I kept hearing things like "Gee you're so awesome" and "What if Avery was as small as a toy soldier and he had to play against a team of 10 foot tall giants? .... Mavs win by 20".
I'm really cheering for the Mavs, and I'm not sure it's the basketball gods having revenge, but I'm still stunned that almost all the hosts at The Ticket were so caught up in Mavs fever that they saw no way for Miami to win at all.
Let’s congratulate the Heat on being NBA Champions since the Mavs have shown nothing to even suggest they can beat the Heat 2 games in a row. Second of all, the only MVP chant I want to hear is for Wade. He personifies an MVP in that he can say when it matters, “Hey boys! Jump on my back and I will carry you to the championship!” All the while Dirk is pulling another 4 for 12 with 6 free throws attempted.
Have we at least learned that Harris cannot guard Wade, and in fact the Mavs have no one who can go one on one with him? I am tired of seeing Wade beat the Mavs single handedly. Can the Mavs at least double Wade? It’s to the point I would rather take the chance of Shaq beating the Mavs. At least it would be someone different.
There’s always next year.
no one has ever come back from down 2-0 in this format and no series has had the home team win all 7 in this format - so someone is going to do something for the 1st time
You are being way too soft on the league and the officials in your blog. It is pretty typical of most of the media.......at least you state that you are writing in protest. That was one of the biggest travesties of sport by the officials I have ever seen. Of course the Mavs didn't do everything right, including the two missed free throws by Howard. But that doesn't matter. The Mavs did enough to win......more than enough. The officials/league actively handed the Heat this game, and there is no doubt about it. Let's think about this for a second some things that had to happen for the Heat to pull out a 1 point win.
1. Mavs 4th leading scorer is suspended for game 5 of THE NBA FINALS for a hard foul on SHAQ. If Stack fouls him "normally," Shaq dunks it, stack bounces off of him, and Shaq gets an and 1 (or an and .35 to be more precise.) so what is wrong with a hard foul? Terrible suspension that has way too much impact on the series for the offense committed. Shaq throws about 30 "suspension worthy" elbows per game but the one time someone balls up and fouls him hard they get suspended. No wonder Dirk is settling for jumpshots, he might be afraid that if he runs over shaq on a drive he might get suspended.
2. Mavs outshot 49-25 from the free throw line. This is an absurd discrepency. Everyone keeps praising Miami's agressiveness and defense. Even you say "I still think this series has changed to Miami's advantage because of the physical nature of these games. Miami has gone old school NBA, and turned the lane into a meat grinder."
I agree. If Miami's defense is turning the lane into a meat grinder, why are the Mavericks shooting so few free throws. The Heat shot 16 free throws to 0 in the third quarter, and committed their first personal foul with 2:40 or something left in the quarter. That is ridiculous. There is no possible way this can be rationalized.
3. Dwyane Wade shot as many free throws as the Mavs. I understand that Dwyane Wade drives a lot and therefore goes to the line a lot. But 25 free throws? He maybe deserved 10 of them. The insta whistle on Wade is not exactly consistent with the "meat grinder" the officials are apparently letting exist. It is pretty tough to win when your opponent is playing "meat grinder" defense and you are playing "insta whistle" defense.
4. Howard timeout. He said he Joe Crawford is lying about him asking for a timeout. You seem to beleive one of the most arrogant blowhard officials in the league over the Mavs second best player. That is kind of weak. If you watch the replay, it is pretty obvious that Howard is looking straight at Avery and isn't making a sound I am tired of people blaming this on Howard. Sure, after 47:58:01 minutes of getting screwed, you would think Howard would realize that he maybe shouldn't make the timeout signal knowing they are looking to screw us. But still, the riciulous lack of consistency on letting techinicalites go (i.e. lane violations when shaq shoots vs. anyone else) sometimes but not others is absolutely terrible.
5. Last play Dwyane Wade. A. May have been backcourt, overlooked....ok whatever B. charges terry, overlooked.....still ok C. gives a little shove to harris......once again, lets let them decide it D. Dirk arm on back. Completely legal. Putting your arm on a guy's back is a legal basketball play. E. No touch fouls at the end of the game right. Well, we all know how that turned out. Just look at Jason Terry's last shot to win in regulation. Wade (or someone) comes down pretty hard on JET's elbow. Live, I didn't think it was anything close to a foul, but Tivo shows that he got hit right on the eblow with no call, because they let the players decide it right?
I really was looking forward to reading your blog because I thought maybe you would be one of the few media members that has the balls to put the blame where it squarely lies. Sure, call me a whiner......I don't care. I refuse to sit here and watch my team that I have been a diehard fan of get completely screwed out of their first nba championship by a bunch of old guys who don't play. I won't just be quiet about it because of fear that someone will say I am just whining. We did more than enough to win that game, but instead of talking about Dirk's ridiculous fadeaway game winning shot, we are talking about how spectacular Dwyane Wade's selfish stupid 1 on 4 heave ended up giving the Heat a 3-2 lead over the Mavericks.
Anyway rant over, Mavs in 7.
I think I'm even more embrassed by Avery & Mark Cuban's lack of class than I am about the Mavs meltdown in this series. Avery, a Christian guy, is making the Mav's beat reporter look stupid, telling him "don't stutter" and Cuban is throwing out f-bombs.
Have you read his blog today? http://www.blogmaverick.com/. I was hoping that there'd be some apoligizes issued but he's not really apologizing for anything. He's a big-time sore loser.
I'm thinking the Mavs may still win this series but the organization is an embarrassment and it's making Dallas fans look stupid. Could you imagine Jerry Jones acting that way?
I have 500 more, too. But, I will save you all of them.
By the way, try to keep the cuss words out of the feedback, lest I be forced to dispose of that feature. We are all able to discuss without that, right?
Yes, there was a Hockey Cup raised, but we all require our focus here with the Mavericks.