Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Game 5: Mavericks 118, Warriors 112 (GS 3-2)

Reggie Miller and Dick Stockton (So) both made the point again and again that only a blowout victory would do. I am pretty sure that blowout wins are worth no more than 1-point wins. It is the first team to 4. It doesn’t matter how you get to 4. You just have to get there first to win the series. The Mavericks certainly did not blow out Golden State last night, but somehow they summoned up the energy to stay alive with a furious rally in the final 3 minutes. There will be a game Thursday. Here are the notes from Game 5:

• History will show that Dirk was much better last night. I am not sure he was until that last rally. In the 2nd half he got back to not shooting and not imposing his will on the game. But then, just when you thought it couldn’t be saved, he hit those back to back 3’s with a sweet defensive block in between. With 3 minutes to play, Dirk was on the verge of cementing his legacy in the wrong direction. But, when he had to, he grabbed the game by the neck and rescued the team like he should be able to do. He climbed right out of the grave. Is this the start of something amazing? Not sure anymore.

• Let the record show that we now have a healthy respect for the Golden State Warriors. They have many talented players who can make shots. They are not mentally weak, they are not intimidated by the moment. In a weird way, you kind of admire the struggle they are putting the Mavericks through (provided the Mavs live through this). To go on the road and survive a 21 point deficit, and to nail 16 3’s is just a sign that they are ready to win. Baron Davis leads them, but he is joined by some really nice players. They are not like the last decade of Golden State jokes.

• If you had Austin Croshere in the pool for “guy who may have saved the season” you are a winner. Did anyone see that coming? Wow! What a cold blooded performance – he just grabbed the ball and shot it like he plays all of the time. 3 for 4 from behind the line, and they needed every one of them.

• Matt Barnes can play. It pains me to admit it, but he is not some bit player. He is a solid contributor who happens to be an unrestricted free agent this summer.

• You may not know who Sarunas Jasikevicius is. Well, he is a bench player for the Warriors who I remember as a starter on some pretty decent Maryland teams in the mid 90’s. Not sure where he has been for the last 10 years, but now he sits and watches the game. Anyway, on Dirk’s last 3 in front of the Warriors bench, Jasikevicius waves at Dirk and acts like he may come off the bench to block the shot. One of the equipment guys sees Sarunas and grabs him back to the bench at which point he seems to take a swing at the poor equipment guy. The Sportscenter clip doesn’t show the whole sequence, but if you still have the game on tape, take a quick look – it is good fun. Just a little story I wanted to tell you…Sounds good.

• Devin Harris has been a minor disappointment for his first 3 seasons. Let’s be honest. He is a top 5 pick, which is a spot reserved for stars. He was drafted moments before Steve Nash signed in Phoenix, and ever since we have hoped that he would step up and become a weapon at the point – for 3 years now. But, just when you think he is a spare part, Harris plays like he did last night and like he did in Game 2 in San Antonio last year. I keep thinking he is on the verge of a real breakout season like Josh had last season, and maybe it is right around the corner. But he deserves big credit for keeping the Mavericks in the game in the 4th Quarter.

• Wasn’t last night one of those games where you are happy, but you are also as worried as ever? That game was 100% mixed emotions. You feel good, but you know there is a ways to go. Thursday is the game of the year. And if they win, so is Saturday.

• So let me get this straight…you run a double team at Baron Davis, and he gives up the ball? Sounds good to me. I am looking forward to seeing more of that.

• Here is another piece of strategy. When Golden State is in transition, they all run to various points on the 3-point line and get ready to knock down the open shot. Perhaps, just perhaps, we should consider defending them.

• That guy who was wearing his sunglasses behind the Mavericks bench last night should have been ejected purely on principle.

• Stephen Jackson can play, but he is a dope.

• I’d like to give an assist for this win to the great Al Pacino.

• Down 9, 3 minutes to go. Anyone want to claim that they still believed?


Brad C said...

This one's for you Dan...

Brad C

I don't know what to say really.
Three minutes to the biggest battle of our professional lives
all comes down to today.
Either we heal as a team
or we are going to crumble.
Inch by inch
play by play
till we're finished.
We are in hell right now, gentlemen
believe me and
we can stay here
and get the shit kicked out of us
or we can fight our way
back into the light.
We can climb out of hell.
One inch, at a time.

Now I can't do it for you.
I'm too old.
I look around and I see these young faces
and I think
I mean
I made every wrong choice a middle age man could make.
I uh....
I pissed away all my money
believe it or not.
I chased off
anyone who has ever loved me.
And lately,
I can't even stand the face I see in the mirror.

You know when you get old in life
things get taken from you.
That's, that's part of life.
you only learn that when you start losing stuff.
You find out that life is just a game of inches.
So is football.
Because in either game
life or football
the margin for error is so small.
I mean
one half step too late or to early
you don't quite make it.
One half second too slow or too fast
and you don't quite catch it.
The inches we need are everywhere around us.
They are in ever break of the game
every minute, every second.

On this team, we fight for that inch
On this team, we tear ourselves, and everyone around us
to pieces for that inch.
We CLAW with our finger nails for that inch.
Cause we know
when we add up all those inches
that's going to make the fucking difference
between WINNING and LOSING
between LIVING and DYING.

I'll tell you this
in any fight
it is the guy who is willing to die
who is going to win that inch.
And I know
if I am going to have any life anymore
it is because, I am still willing to fight, and die for that inch
because that is what LIVING is.
The six inches in front of your face.

Now I can't make you do it.
You gotta look at the guy next to you.
Look into his eyes.
Now I think you are going to see a guy who will go that inch with you.
You are going to see a guy
who will sacrifice himself for this team
because he knows when it comes down to it,
you are gonna do the same thing for him.

That's a team, gentlemen
and either we heal now, as a team,
or we will die as individuals.
That's football guys.
That's all it is.
Now, whattaya gonna do?

Andy D. said...

Let me just start by saying.. I thought we were done with 3:00 left last night.
Dirk had 2 shots taken and only 4 pts in the second half until the "rally". Unbelievable. But lets be honest here, did we figure out Golden State last night? Absolutely not.

That is one great 8 seed. Talent scattered all around that lineup, BD is ridiculous, mohawk man is solid, damn... watch out for them to be better in the years to come.

Now game 6 in their barn? OH MY GOD, I have no idea what will turn out.

johnmark said...

I agree with your main points on Game 5, Bob. And I think this win in the final furious 3 minutes, was better than any blow-out win. We blew GS out of the series in 3 clean, quick-hitting minutes. Good jab Dirk.

And I did not give up, but I mentally prepared myself during the final timeouts leading up the the FFTM (furious final 3 minutes), JIC we lost.

(I'm told aka means also-known-as)
:::the following are my comments from my original ESPN Conversation Post on Mark Stein's blog - edited by me for Portability - aka Im-gonna-post-it-around-real-fast::: ***You mean "warriors blew it" can be used in a sentence? Believe It - the next two games are not warriors to blow. They lost their only chance to upset the Mavs, and after an 0-and-4 (aka 3.9) game losing streak to begin these playoffs, the Mavs will roll into Round Two. When the Mavs whipped warriors in the final 3 minutes, Dirk redeemed himself and proved his critics are maroons. ***I would love to see the High-Def DVR version of the whole sweet Three-Minute Dirk/Defense/Backs-to-the-wall/Game-Ending/Series-Surviving/End-of-game Statement that the GREAT MAVS made in 2007 Western Conf Round One Game 5. I was at the game and could not clearly see all the scrums in front of the Warriors bench from my seat on 2nd-row/upper-level/behind-warriors-bench, but trust me I saw all the contact iniatiated by Davis, Jackson, and the rest of the circus during the whole game 5. ::: begin coherent rambling::: I know Baron Davis is an NBA-actor moonlighting as a carnival/matchstick man. Or is old Don Nelson the real snake-oil salesman?, bless his jolly little cuban cigar. They both now remind me of Santa Claus in a bad comedy movie. Baron, in this series, also reminds me of Danny Devito in Big Fish, for some reason, even though, others think ***insert lame criticism of my POV***, and I doubt Davis actually is a werewolf. (Personally - didnt like Big Fish, but my buddy SeanJ likes it for some reason) (Dont get me wrong - he can play basketball - Baron, not Sean - but Davis cannot possibly stay on fire forever like some kind of sick game of NBA-Jams.) And yes - the refs, especially #7, were very suspect in this Game Five. I had to yell "Dwayde is not in the building" too-many-times (so the Refs might catch a clue) Too-many-times. I did not feel this way about the Refs while watching games one-thru-four on Television. I look forward to game 7 on Saturday. But for now, the Mavs themselves should look forward only to game 6 on thursday, atleast until Dirk catches fire again. Look-out-now you jolly-college-old-city-crowd in Oakland Arena (or whatever yall call it). PLEASE somebody in the lower-bowl of Game 6 or Game 7 hold up a sign showing how Baron Davis reminds you of Fletch selling D-rugs on the beach (sans rollerskates for Baron) while also looking alot like Fat Sam. My original prediction: Mavs in 4 (what-can-I-say?) My current prediction: GS does not make 16 three's in Game 6 and Jackson gets toss-fecta (aka "Mavs in 7") Game 5: Priceless. Game 6: Mavs Win (by leading after the 4th quarter, as far as you know.) Game 7: Please exist. :::end coherent rambling::: ***JMP***
Update: If Mavs lose game 6 my main points and all supporting points become Moo Points. They would be Moo.

Anonymous said... about some spaces or some
paragraph breaks

Robert Stoops said...

Bob -

I dont think that you give enough credit to Big Mac for declaring the Mavs dead yesterday. His predictions of doom are gold for the little Mavs.

Thx Big Mac.

What a freaking magical game. Did you hear Dirk's comments on TNT last night after the game? "I felt like the season was swimming away"

Just what he said in the San Antonio series game 7... too uncanny... the performances were too similar and cold blooded... I like how this bodes for Game 6.

Rick said...

Can we get a 1500 word limit on the blog comments? To the game: Dirk, I'm slightly proud of you. You truly showed up in MVP form...for 1/16th of a game. That's probably not going to cut it for game 6, so find your testicles and play like you can play in Oakland. It'd be a shame if the season ends this early and Jason Terry had to go to his summer job of being the stunt double for the black guy from "The 40 Year Old Virgin."

Jay, Christi and Andrew said...

What can you say after this?

BTW, for quick clarification, what's the new technical foul rule concerning one game sit outs? Is Jackson there yet after at least 4 and 2 ejections? Imagine none of that headcase in game 6 flapping his arms. Please basketball gods...

Anyway, I told my wife right before the big comeback that I didn't think Dirk would ever be the same again mentally after the SEVERE beating he would take from everyone about the 2nd half performance, and then the German summons the Hasselhoff power and does that. If he can carry this team through the place that is full of Raiders fans indoors (might scary) then maybe the MVP will be deserved.

Kudos to letting "Cro" play, as Avery likes to call him. Now we're starting to win some match-up wars experimenting.

Kudos to Devin and Terry for taking it to the hole. I really think it was easier than they thought it would be, so hopefully they realize that they can do that, get this not very deep Warriors team in foul trouble, and pull this baby out.

And Diop... (slow clap)

No said...

I gave up when they went 9 down. I turned the TV off and expected to hear about the loss on 7:10a ticker.

Here's to hoping they can actually pull out a win in CA

BACM said...

Will Stephen Jackson be "substantialy" suspended?


CFB123 said...

That game last night absolutely had it all and was incredible to watch from just a pure fan perspective. Despite the late heroics, the fact remains though that Dallas was quite fortunate to escape with a win on their own home floor. Game 6 will bring an entirely different element being back in Oakland again with that crowd.

I give the Mavs a lot of credit for sacking up at the end, but this series ends tomorrow night. The Mavs were supposed to win last night and they did, it just wasn't in the way that anyone expected. Now it's Golden State's turn, and Dallas still hasn't shown me anything to believe that they can extend the series beyond 6, much less beat them 3 straight times.

The Warriors will come out tomorrow jacked up beyond belief for 4 quarters, and I just don't see the Mavs having an answer for it. They can't play lights out for the first quarter and a half, and then disappear until the final 3 minutes and expect to win out there like they did last night.

James said...

I never stopped believing Bob. The pain from last year is still too recent. If this was the Stars - well, we know. This is the Mavs, we win, and were coming back for Game 7. See you on Saturday night. SECTION 325 ROW B... See you there...

C said...

First to 4.

Everything else is just speculation.

Go Mavericks.

Jake said...

I'm with CFB. I can't see how the Mavs can take the GS fans out of Game 6, much less stop lay-up or wide open 3. Grow some sack, play some D.

michaelandfaith said...

I don't think last night's game constitutes a momentum shift. Dallas tried to land a knockout blow in the first half and the Warriors completely shrugged it off. The Warriors really did the Mavs a favor by holding the ball like they did for the last 4 minutes. It really played right into the Mavs double team. Who else heard Kenny Smith say Dirk fouled Richardson on his bricked three from the corner and got away with one?

Did anyone else see Mr. Roper reffing the game under the pseudonym Jim Clark?

JY said...

I don't know, as a Mavs fan, you can feel good about the rest of this series. You had your boot on the Warriors neck, had them down by 21, and they come back on you. You got lead after lead, 9 points, 6 points, etc, and they came back on you in a matter of seconds. As a Spurs fan, I almost felt bad for the Mavs as they were down 9 with 3 left. But I can put off feeling bad for the Mavs until Saturday.

And what was with that foul on Davis at the end of the game that sent him out. He got whistled for a foul for NOT touching the guy. I know they had to take a foul, but do you really think that the Warriors plan was to have Davis take that foul. Bad call refs... bad call... Starting to get used to it... Maybe it was because the ref was white and the player was black.

michaelandfaith said...

I was also impressed with Golden State's courage to throw the "Kitchen book" at Dirk. Dirk showed a lot of aversadility to overcome in the end.

Gravypan said...

Well like I said under a different pseudonym, the Warriors have that seed of doubt planted in their minds. They had us dead to rites with a 9 point lead and just over three minutes left and could not close the deal.

They still have the hammer in this series. But if they lose Game 6 under similar circumstances, they're done for in Game 7, IMO.

Whatever said...

If you want to rediscover your faith/love in the Mavs and the big the below clip. It gets me every time.

dingus mcdouchey said...

man utd choke job!