So, do you think the Dallas Mavericks are a little confused today? I am. I thought they would go all the way. Instead, they join the other team that made is to the NBA Finals, the Miami Heat, on the golf course of elimination.
In my mind, Miamiâ€™s loss in the first round looked like a possibility. Dwayne Wade had missed a lot of the seasonâ€”although he managed to put up some good numbers in the first roundâ€”and the Heat itself just wasnâ€™t the same team that it was last year. Another year for Shaq means a little more wear and tear. Also, the Bulls had youth and a strong veteran presence that gelled this season.
But the Mavsâ€”with only 15 loses all seasonâ€”and one of the best frontcourts in the league simple appeared to be destined to secure its first NBA Championship. But a few things happened in this series that sealed the fate of Dallas.
Firstâ€”Golden State managed to take the man who will probably be league MVP, Dirk Nowitzski, out of his game. Nowitzski lost confidence, started sounding negative and was shut down. In the press, he became a confused worrier and then, simply a fatalist. Before the Fat Lady sang, he was saying that it was over.
Secondâ€”Golden State was aggressive in shooting and it paid off. They were able to bury the Mavs with their speed and shooting. They of the 42- 40 record played like they had nothing to lose, because they hadâ€¦ wellâ€¦ nothing to lose. As the final seed in the West, and they captured that spot on the final day of the season, they were simply happy t be thereâ€”to be in a position where they could cause mayhem. And mayhem they did cause.
In the stands, Mavâ€™s owner Marc Cuban lost his luster too. No complaining about the officiating this year. No whining. And no winning. No histrionics on the final night. The series didnâ€™t even go seven. Golden State had crushed the Lone Star State, leaving Cuban with a sort of vacant, Twilight Zone glaze over his eyes.
Dallas managed to win it all during the regular season to simply lose it all in the post-season. The Golden State Warriors? Well, theyâ€™ve proven one thingâ€”they have unlimited potential. It will be interesting to see where it takes them in the extremely wild, wild NBA West.