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Ugly but effective

For those who believed this would be a high-scoring, free-flowing, fastbreak series, take THAT!

Two teams shooting less than 40 percent, no one scoring more than 27 points AND Juwan Howard getting eight minutes and MVP chants.

Not exactly how the prognosticators had this one playing out.

But if you'd watched the defenses the Mavs have played against these playoffs, you had to assume they'd struggle against this athletic Heat defense. And such was the case.

Chris Bosh said the defense that kept the Mavericks to 37.3 percent shooting, that "limited" Dirk Nowitzki to 27 points and the Mavericks vaunted bench to 17 points was pretty much par for the course.

"It's a normal night," Bosh said. "I think we can do better. I think we can play much better offensively and defensively."

It wasn't all great for the Heat, of course. Dwyane Wade looked like the same Wade from the Bulls series through two-plus quarters. It wasn't, really, until the fourth quarter that he looked confident and in rhythm. You would assume that could transfer to the start of the next game, but Wade finished Games 4 and 5 against Chicago strong as well, but it didn't continue in the next game.

Wade should be able to score on either Jason Terry or Jason Kidd, but he seemed oddly hesitant several times.

"He's such an explosive offensive player, he spoils you a little bit," Bosh said of Wade. "He's a major part of this team's offense. Anytime that he's going, it's great."

Bron finals Nowitzki's night was uneven, at best. He did his best work in the fourth, with 10 points, but he never got into a consistent rhythm, either. Udonis Haslem was his typical good self defending Dirk, but so was Joel Anthony. LeBron James didn't defend Dirk, as many projected, and if the bigs do this kind of job against him, that probably shouldn't change.

Mavs coach Rick Carlisle gave UD credit for denying Dirk.

"He's got to be denied the ball virtually everywhere on the floor," Carlisle said. "Haslem is a guy that has the wherewithal to do that. And they're going to play him aggressively, and we know that.

"We just to keep playing our game, keep getting him the ball and giving him opportunities to create."

By the way, Dirk has a torn tendon on the middle finger of his left hand and is wearing a splint, while Mike Miller left the locker room with his left arm in a sling. He obviously has a shoulder injury, but no one's really acknowledging it.

Back to the Heat offense for a second. Heat can't rely on LeBron hitting four of five threes, even if a couple of them were so open he had to shoot a commercial first. Wade needs to be more consistent, Bosh needs to be less clumsy against that zone and more assertive with his jumper, and LeBron needs to shoot more than two free throws.

As is, Shawn Marion believes the Mavericks did exactly what they needed to do to win.

"It was a completely halfcourt game tonight, and they prevailed," Marion said. "You hold a team to 38 percent and 92 points, for us, that's normally a victory."


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This game was a gimme. Prepare for battle.

Heat were fortunate Dallas shrinks in the spotlight. The mavs dribble penetrated all night, and got open looks for everybody. I'm not sure if it was the heat defense, or just a lack of embracing the moment by the mavericks. Well, whatever...heat win.

Wow...I didn't know DWade was that fast. He made Jason 'The Jet' Terry look slow. Yet, DWade couldn't get past Jason Kidd?!?!?

My prediction: I didn't think this possible, but overnight Miami has become a superior team over the rest of the league. Now physicality doesn't scare or hurt them and their defense over comes their shooting woes they have at times. Dirk tried to scream at Marion which shows he's nervous and emotional (bad) and has a real fear that his team has to play perfect to win. Meanwhile, Miami has learned to win ugly. I see Miami winning this series 4 - 0.

Well, we all saw it...though it's just one game and an odd one at that. Heat have this ability to play ugly, grind it & win whereas the Mavs looked old & slow...and almost surprised. You would think the Mavs need to avoid playing the half court game & go more up tempo which the Heat can also adjust to. Can't wait for Thursday...Go Heat !

When I saw Dirk scream at Marion, it just confirmed what I had been thinking for the past week, that guy must be just having nightmares about realizing that he is going to lose his ring to the Heat again. It was way too early in the game for Dirk to be reacting like that especially considering how strong Marion has played for them in the playoffs. And I'd be pretty pissed if I was Marion and I had that German choke artist disrespecting me like that in such a national primetime setting.

GO HEAT!!!!!!!!!

"Back to the Heat offense for a second. Heat can't rely on LeBron hitting four of five threes, even if a couple of them were so open he had to shoot a commercial first. Wade needs to be more consistent, Bosh needs to be less clumsy against that zone and more assertive with his jumper, and LeBron needs to shoot more than two free throws."

My thoughts exactly. Dallas dared Lebron and Wade to shoot long J's. A good strategy, since they have NEVER been good 3pt shooters, for their entire careers.

Somehow, Miami shot 46% from downtown: Highly unusual.

As I wrote before on several posts, this series may come down to what team hits more long distance shots. In game 1, Miami somehow got the upper hand on that department. Extremely unusual, since Dallas is by FAR the better long distance shooting team. And I don't buy that the Mavs missed because of Miami's defense, if you SAW the game, the had ZILLIONS of wide open shots.

So I'm far from impressed. The Heat just held serve at home, barely. And had to rely on Lebron shooting 4/5 from downtown. That won't happen again, you can bet your house on it.

So I totally agree with Gutierrez on the above quote.

If the same game is played on Thursday, daring the Heat to shoot 3's, same defensive intensity from both teams, Dallas could very well steal game 2.

Carslile and the Mavs are probably encouraged from what happened in game 1, and will probably use the same strategy tomorrow.

The Heat needs to make some changes and attack the rim more.

The other major factor on this series, besides long distance shooting efficiency: Rebounds.

Miami barely won game 1 because of that too:

46 to 36 boards.

The big difference was on the offensive glass:

16 rbs Heat / only 6 offensive rbs Mavs.

Both teams had 30 defensive boards.

Obviously, Miami was more aggressive offensively. Dallas needs to fix that, fight on the offensive board with Chandler and Haywood and their size advantage.. I'm sure Carlisle is looking at the same stats and making the proper adjustments.

Sledge, I never comment on these posts but I always read.. I have to say this, You are the biggest Hater ever.. You always say "Heat barely won".. Heat won by 8 pts.. Held Dallas to their second lowest scoring in the playoffs in Mavs HISTORY.. Dominated in practically every category.. What are you talking about?

Dallas has the same issue many teams (like Chicago) have, 1 great scorer and good role players.. The Heat have 3 great scorers (or 2 and a half for the Haters).. 3 is greater than 1.. Not to mention our best offensive players are also great defenders.. Tough to beat night in and night out, let alone 4 out of 7 series..

Charles, you were probably sweating bullets all night long until Lebron hit those miracle 3's late in the 4th. Be honest with yourself, is my suggestion. Very close game, on the road, if the Heat uses the same strategy, they lose game 2. And again, grow up. This is just a GAME, entertainment. I hate Al Quaeda, and stuff like that.. Blind Fan-aticism sure ain't my cup of tea, though.

Dallas must be encouraged from what transpired in game 1, for the specific reasons I detailed above.

It is not even worth discussing with him. I used to feel like you but I have learned that no matter what, he can only see it one way. I have come to learn that he is on all South Florida blogs saying the same thing and getting the same reaction. My recommendation is to read his posts for a chuckle maybe call him out but don't try and reason with him.

Now on to the bigger deal and honestly the more important thing. Good game Heat. Just three more victories. It was not pretty at times but it doesn't have to be. All that matters is the final score.

Lol..Dude of course games will be close... IT'S THE FINALS... Point is you never give the Heat thier credit.. You belittle wins by saying "BARELY" but if a team beats us by same margin then you Exaggerate.. Was I nervous as a fan yes, But I was confident.. 8 point loss is not a close game..And now Dirks hurt too.. Mavs fans (and the Haters like you..and don't get all political with the Al Quaeda stuff, you know ur a Heat Hater) should be nervous..

Nerf sledge bringin' the hammer, again. Wedgie, you know anything about football? There used to be a team called the Miami Dolphins, who were grinders that rarely won big (and not just because Shula would sit a Paul Warfield if he scored four TDs in the first half against an overmatched Detroit). They barely won a lot of games. And barely lost NONE one year. You see how that works?

Ya beat me to it, Charles.

I usually just read Sludge's crap and shake my head knowing he lives on the reactions of others. And, also knowing by writing this I give him what he lives for. But saying Miami "Barely" won this games is ridiculous. Dallas is a 100+ point a game team nearly every night. Miami's defense put a sock in that crap. 16 to 8 boards are no fluke... that shows the difference between a young, fast team and a older, slower team trying to exist on experience alone.
Dallas SHOULD win at least a game. My God, you would hope a team that makes it this far wins at least a game. That will make no difference however. The fact is clear and has been written by many on this blog all year. ANY TEAM can get "Up" for a game against Miami. ANY TEAM can get a crowd Fueled emotional win from them. But when you boiled it all down over a 7 game series... Miami will just grind you out like a spent cigarette.
Sludge knows exactly what he is all about, as does this blog and it's normal posters. But Sludge will NEVER concede to the FACT that Miami win or lose this series will be around for many more to come... This is only the 1st year of a 4 to 6 year dynasty in Miami. That must eat Sludge’s lunch. And that makes my day.

You know what, I bet Sledge is a Heat fan at heart and just post all this stuff for fun.. I'm convinced cuz altho he seems intelligent in how he says stuff, he constantly gets it wrong.. This has to be an act for him..#Justsayin

Let's play a game called "when the Heat win the series sledge will say:..Ready go..

"When the Heat win this series Sledge wiil say".... It was becuz of Dirks hand..

haa...if the heat are the last one's standing...everyone else has fallen, they've taken the toughest road to get there...'yes, they won, but they barely beat everyone?'

Sledge I give you more credit than not to admit the Heat are doing a fine job. There are only two teams left, and what I saw is Miami has learned how to close and can win in those ugly games that can go either way. Heck they've done it against the Celts, Chicago, Philly, etc. I keep hearing how Miami will lose every serious if they don't do this or that and I see Miami never change their style and keep winning. Remember we have guys with Killer instincts. At least Wade and Haslem has proven that if you still don't want to put Lebron and Bosh in that category. Hell, even Mike Miller is going on all cylinders. Bibby needs a wake up call, but Chalmers is bringing it. Dirk has never proven to have the killer instinct, and so early in the game he panicked and started screaming at Marion - I would be pissed too as one poster wrote. With Dirk's behavior and how Miami won game 1, I'm thinking this will be a 4-0 sweep and Miami can have it's second celebration that was promised in the first and the rest of the cities hate it because they wanted to throw that celebration back in our face. Doesn't look like it will happen.

"So I'm far from impressed. The Heat just held serve at home, barely. And had to rely on Lebron shooting 4/5 from downtown. That won't happen again, you can bet your house on it."

Another predictable comment from sister Sledge the Bball guru. He says the same thing over and over again after every Heat win. He'll say again when the Heat are holding up the ship. But do we care that you're not impressed? No!

“LeBron James wasn’t particularly moved, when told of Dirk’s damage.

“He’s right-handed,” James said. “He’ll be all right. He shoots the ball extremely well. That left hand is just a guide hand for all shooters. We all know that. It won’t affect him. He’s still going to be great. He’s still Dirk.”

Why does DivaBron have to comment on that? Think about it.. Of Course: he wants full credit for this season, and no excuses.

Now let’s use good old common sense, often the least common of all senses:

Would you like to have a torn tendon in your middle finger, Lebron, and have to wear a splint for the rest of the playoffs??


Regardless of what hand, or what finger. Would you be a more accurate shooter with a splint in one hand?

That’s why you can’t trust a lot of what these Diva players say: They blatantly LIE. For the media, and they have a clear Agenda. They are TRAINED, since high school, to say the “right thing”, although some are better than others (Wade is a lot smarter when addressing the media than Bron).

The Heat are denying that Wade is hurt, bumped up and all. Even after all the icing, and sub-par performances since the Boston/Chicago series. Why? Because they have to LIE. I don’t blame them, that’s part of their job, to masquerade the truth and say the right things.. As Gutierrez and Ira and Ethan and many others politely suggest..

But Lebron should have kept his mouth shut about Nowitzki’s injury.

Yes: an injury, on the hand, with a Splint.

IG - "Heat can't rely on LeBron hitting four of five threes...Bosh needs to be less clumsy against that zone and more assertive with his jumper [while] LeBron needs to shoot more than two free throws."


Yup. The Heat have been a .500 team ALL season whenever they attempted 20+ x 3PT FGAs.

That hasn't changed in the postseason, where the Heat have exceeded 20 x 3PT FGAs in only 2 x playoff games -- BOTH losses. If you're keeping track, that's 2 of the only 3 losses MIA suffered ALL postseason.

The other immutable effects of so many 3s? More Heat 3s = less MIA points-in-the-paint, less Heat aggression, less FTAs by Heat players, less effort expended by Dallas defenders to defend (i.e., zones), less fouling by the Mavs, more tread on DAL wheels for offense -- which steepens the climb for MIA defenders.

The Jo-el effect aka the law of diminishing returns? -5 last night as well as the distinction of being the only Heat starter to log consistent NEGATIVE +/- in recent MIA wins (since BOS).

Which does NOT mean the Heat would be better off with Dampier no matter how "helpful" Spo claims any more than joking about "goon cameos" from MIA's best rebounder per min (Magloire) doesn't mean Cat couldn't help (esp. as a neutralizing antidote to Chandler's physicality).

Otherwise, please don't conflate worry with the naysaying negativity of the Heat Hating Nabobs & Chucky Convict Fat A$$e$.

We WANT the Heat to win doing what they did to DEMOLISH Boston & SMOTHER Chicago.

Defense aside, "we" didn't do enough of those things in Game 1.


I don't get all this talk about "the Mavs must be encouraged because the Heat 'barely' won.." I remember the same talk about Chicago being encouraged because they barely lost to Miami.

Yep, they are in Chi-Town quite encouraged that they can beat Miami while they watch the finals in the comfort of their living room.

I win is a win, specially in the Finals.

"Otherwise, please don't conflate [one fan's anxiety (moi)] with naysaying negativity [from] Heat Hating Nabobs (Sludge) & Chucky Convict (Barkley et al) Fat A$$e$."

"When the Heat win this series Sledge wiil say"....

Jason Kidd is too old...

@Tired, you're 100% right. Trying to reason with a schizophrenic is impossible. I just like picking on him every so often when I have some time. He's a homer that's blinded by his hate for the Heat even when he can't admit it. Note his write up on Lebron's Dirk injury comment. He wrote a long paragraph on it but, he doesn't get it, no one cares...but he feels more like a man now...until his mom whips him for spending too much time on his computer.

Some of you feverish, fanatical fans really have a tough time sticking to the game of basketball, not the blogger.

My 2 basic contentions here, as you could READ above, are detailed, specific and backed up by statistics.

1. Long distance shots could very well be the difference in this series. (As opposed to plays in the paint, since both teams defend exceedingly well). Whatever team drills the long bombs, wins. I wrote that about 3 days ago here, and elsewhere.

True enough, Miami got bailed out by lebron's unusual 3's. 4/5 from downtown. 46% for the Heat. Close game, unless you did not watch it, or were looking for calming pills in the 4th quarter.

2. Rebounds: Miami won that battle fair and sqaure in game one. Specifically, offensive rebounds, the disparity was appauling: 6-16. That should raise a few eyebrows, since Dallas is has a size advantage.

Both coaches are looking into those 2 BIG factors. Rest assured.

I don't get paid, but I like this game so I feel compelled to break it down for other bloggers at times.

As Gutierrez suggests, the Heat better do something else on game 2. Questions? Read above, detailed argument, check the stats, refer to each team's strengths and weaknesses.

So instead of calling other bloggers names, or being obesessed with some "sledge" guy you don't even know, why don't you offer your own, original insights regarding this final series? Stiock to the freakin' game, if you don't mind, fevereish, fan-atical Homer kiddos, and give it a better shot at being somewhat "objective.

That said, Heat in 7.

"When the Heat win this series Sledge will say".....

I'm not impressed, they barely won.

I hear ya I to fall into the game of responding just for amusements sake. I actually don't mind other teams fans commenting but I wish that we could at least get educated fans that make sense and can admit when they are wrong.

For example I am sure that in previous posts he clearly stated that he does not make predictions yet "That said, Heat in 7." sounds like a prediction to me but what do I know.

@Sledge you still never answered what NBA team plays a 3-2 defense. Can you tell when during last nights game you saw the Mavs in a 3-2? Or the Heat for that matter? Here since you like to read so much and your NBA knowledge is ever growing here is a break down of the Mave defense.

Tired of tired: I sent u a link if you want to learn about the multiple zones Dallas and other teams routinely utilize, wasted my time, obviously. Dallas used MOSTLY a 2-3 zone and a 1-2-2, plus the wing pressure zones, plus the occasional 3-2 zones in motion.

Go back to last blog if you'd like to learn.

Heat in 4.

1) Dirk broke within the first quarter yelling at Marion for not shooting? Wow. That was a panick move and the game was tied. That move can cause fighting amongst team mates. He yelled at Marion like he was a scrubb. I've seen Kobe do that to Pao (never to tough teammate like Artest or Barnes). Marion was balling and hasn't disappeared like Pao sometimes do, so Dirk's showed he was too wired and emotional. His armor of being tough disappeared in that one moment. What made it worst was Dirk coming out with a bandaid on - like here's our excuse when we lose, but i don't want to talk about it, lol.

2) The jet, their fastest player that can contribute is slow by Miami standards.

3) Barea, the fastest can't contribute with Miami's talls being so quick.


Charles was talking about how Dallas should be encouraged (as they did every series) and how Dallas beat themselves (as every team Miami plays do). Don't they see the trend that this happens with every team Miami plays, so it must be Miami's play? I love how the other commentator countered Charles' Dallas should be happy, they shot 32% and were close...Duh, Miami shot 38% and won. If you don't think Miami won't play that badly again, why do you think Miami will?

Jon Barry (big hater) - Dallas held miami to 38% shooting (at the half)...but what he didn't state was that Miami held Dallas to 28%, 10 pts

Let the parade begin.

What made it worst was Dirk coming out with a bandaid on - like here's our excuse when we lose, but i don't want to talk about it, lol."

Have you ever had a TORN Ligament in any of your fingers, tough guy?

And, Energy, Nowitzki probably did the right thing to Motivate Marion, as the Leader of the Mavs. Obviously, it paid great dividends all game long, since the matrix played great, before, and especially after Nowitzki got in his case.

Mike Bibby is the worst player among Heat Players.

We can call on John Hollinger’s player efficiency rating (PER), a measure of productivity on a per-minute basis, to lend us a hand. For reference, a 15.0 PER is average and a 11.0 PER marks the productivity of a borderline rotation player. Dwyane Wade has a 28.2 PER, which is tops for all remaining players in the playoffs.

Bibby’s playoff PER?


Of the 3,105 times that a player has logged at least 180 minutes in a postseason, where does Bibby’s 1.1 PER rank?

Dead last.

Sledge, he panicked because you don't embarrass a former all-star like that. I know Marion must be pissed because that picture is head lining the sports page in Dallas. haa...Marion, former all star, only other player contributing, getting yelled at like a kid in front of the nation and then posterized...haa...I'm sure that will work out well for Dallas.

Mike Bibby ruined Miami Heat Performance

The Miami Heat’s defense is much worse when Mike Bibby is on the floor.

Not just worse, much worse. Tom Haberstroh crunched the numbers for the Heat Index at ESPN.

When point guard Mike Bibby has been on the floor for the Heat, Miami’s defense has surrendered 15 points per 100 possessions more than when he has sat on the bench. (We use per 100 possessions as the standard to control for potential tempo effects).

That sounds bad, but how damaging is that? Consider this: the difference between the league’s top defense (Chicago) and the league’s worst defense (Cleveland) is 12.5 points per 100 possessions. Do the math, and you find that Bibby’s defensive impact has been about three points wider than that.

With LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, the Heat have a couple of athletic and impressive perimeter defenders who can pressure the ball and get to help positions quickly. Few perimeter players can block shots like them. But that’s not how you hide a bad defender on the perimeter, you need a big man who can erase mistakes inside to pull that off well. The Lakers Derek Fisher is not a good defender but their length inside and shot blocking cover his mistakes. The Heat have Joel Anthony but he is not used regularly.

The Heat have had a good defense — fifth best in the NBA this season at 100.4 points per possession. They play a very different defensive style than the Celtics, but it works for them. From the first day Erik Spoelstra made defense the identity of this team.

But Bibby changes that.

But on defense? That’s where things get ugly. For much of the season, the Heat battled the Bulls and the Celtics for the league’s best defense. Now, the Heat have slid in the ranks down to fifth place, separating themselves from the cream of the crop. What’s most interesting is when that slide started: when Bibby came into town. He made his debut Mar. 13 against the Magic when the Heat allowed 99 points on just 89 possessions, translating to a defensive efficiency far above the Heat norm. The next game? The San Antonio Spurs dropped 125 points on the Heat.

So here are the numbers with Bibby in tow. Since that Orlando game (Bibby’s debut), the Heat’s defensive efficiency (points allowed per 100 possessions) has ranked 20th in the league at 106.4, according to data from NBA StatsCube. That’s worse than Cleveland, Minnesota and Sacramento over that stretch. Before that game, the Heat’s defensive efficiency stood at 99.7, one of the very best in the league.

There is what statisticians call “noise” in the numbers, something that Haberstroh admits (for example, Bibby came in when the Heat played their string of playoff bound teams, for one). Also, Bibby’s three-point shooting has boosted the offense when he is on the floor so despite how bad the defense is the Heat still tend to slightly outscore their opponents.

But Mario Chalmers does not have this kind of defense impact. Neither did Carlos Arroyo, the man the Heat sent out to make room for Bibby.

Right now, Bibby’s offense covers the problems. But in a playoff series where teams will work to isolate and exploit him, and to take away his offensive threes, Bibby likely will become a bigger issue for Miami.

Just ask the people in Atlanta.

Nothing new, Chris. The Heat simply have putrid point guards. No revelation there. No decent centers, no deep bench. Nothing new. Except the big 3 might be enough to win it all.

But damn we barely won in the finals.
Wait to we breakdown film
This defense punks teams , including teams that go through a tough road , like sweeping the defending champs.
Its quite simple really , name me a team recently that has won a title without playing the best defense???????
Oh yeaa , immature name calling ? RUPAUL?
Hahahaa still geting smoked I see , punching bags re always fun though

Cherio !

Our D is ALL up in texas' AS. HEAT = HELLAVA ENTERTAINING ATHLETIC TEAM. I see a big parade on Biscayne Bld in about a week.

@Hate, he contradicts himself constantly but never admits it. He has to prove his Bball knowledge by pointing out the obvious. I don't mind it since I don't care, it's just fun laughing at the delusions. He has made many predictions before but tries to deny it when they're wrong. I guess it's part of his game of crying for attention (look at me, I know basketball). I guess he waited until after game 1 in order to increase his odds of being right. It's all in his head. Next season I won't bother with him.

Sludge loves his stats.

How did those work for him vs the Sixers, Celts, and Bulls ?

No doubt the Mavs will play better and I still expect a long series ... and more spewing reguritation of mundane statistics to support his Heat-hater mentality.

Dude must be a woman because he thinks like one.

@Chris, thanks for insightful comment. Better than anything sister sledge puts out. It's lacks the finger pointing, contradictions and negativity he's well known for.

Bibby is a problem but as stated by the sister the big 3 will cover his deficiencies. My worry is the talk of a hard salary cap being discussed in the collective bargaining meeting. As per David Stern, it's possible the Heat wouldn't be able to keep all 3 superstars.

The ad hominem's are tiresome, kiddos. Stick to the game of basketball.

technically, if at all possible.

While you somehow feel the need to "enlighten" all of us with your wonderful array of useless statistics, none of us are remotely interested. ANYONE can go to numerous websites and spout the same B.S. So thanks, but no thanks. You might find it hard to understand but where you believe you have something to bring to the table (I see your name in EVERY South Florida newspaper), NO ONE ELSE DOES! The one thing you got right is when you said "it's only a game". Using that theory, your constant posting and reposting of the same repetitive garbage borders on obsession.
And by the way, Dirk freaking out on Marion early in the game, no less the series shows Dirk knows they have to be absolutely perfect to be able to just be competitive. This wasn't a captain being a leader, it's a sign of desperation. You will NEVER see D Wade screaming at UD or Mike Miller like that. He's a true captain, although he knows his team isn't out manned and in over their heads.
I thought Terry's comments were telling and funny. He said he hasn't ever been defended by LeBron and "he's very fast, and it's gonna be tough".
Marion said they did exactly what they planned to do and still lost." Normally when we hold a team to 92 points, we win." Not when you play a defense that gives up about 84 points a game!
Sledge, they can tinker,retool,reset,practice,and make adjustments but none of it will matter!

"Marion said they did exactly what they planned to do and still lost."

Do you care to post the EXACT, complete quote, in due context? You won't, but anyway, like I said, Dallas should apply the exact same game plan on game 2. If they do, as I explained before, they'll probably steal the game. Even if they are outrebounded again.

About Lebron's stupid comments:

Dirk Nowitzki is giving the Mavericks' NBA Title chances the middle finger - literally.

Nowitzki tore tendons in his left middle finger on a defensive play during the Mavericks 92-84 loss to the Miami Heat in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. Although Nowitzki is a right handed shooter, ESPN NBA analyst Tim Legler said this injury is more significant than Nowitzki is letting on during an interview with ESPN's Mike and Mike in the Morning show.

"They're going to downplay it, obviously. But there's no question, for a shooter, when your left hand has an injury like that - and I've played with dislocations on my left hand and various injuries throughout the years - it affects you when you catch the basketball," Legler said. "You don't quite catch it clean and that's a little bit of a problem getting into the shooting position, locked and loaded quickly."

Legler said this injury will have some significance because of Nowitzki's propensity to finish with the left hand around the basket.

"That's a big problem for Dirk Nowitzki because he actually prefers to go left, particularly when he starts from the middle of the floor at the top of the key," Legler said. "He loves to go left, swing through and go that way for either a step back jumper or to try to get to the rim to finish with that left hand. Both of those things are going to be affected by his inability to squeeze that basketball and get a firm grip on it."

Legler added, "will it affect him to the extinct that he's not an effective player? I don't think so but I don't think he's going to be the same Dirk Nowitski that we've seen throughout the playoffs

This series is over!! Everyone expecting Lebron to guard Dirk, for what? Listen Joel does a good job guarding Dirk, Haslem is another know Dirk container, and Bosh can get the job done!

To me the key, was something totally unexpected, Lebron on Terry killed whatever momentum or big shots Terry might have provided! Evident by him going scoreless in the 2nd half!

My only gripe would be to keep Joel off of Chandler as much as possible because Joel has a hard time recovering once he provide help defense! Proof to this was the lob dunk Chandler got! We can't have that because that's what the live for with him(more energy if that continually happens)

Can you losers go back to Ira's blog with your retarded crap?

Also, your total rejects and you need to get laid.

Yeah Herald please kick Sledge out!!!

Lol. ZERO Basketball arguments. The exact definition of blind fanaticism.

"To me the key, was something totally unexpected, Lebron on Terry killed whatever momentum or big shots Terry might have provided! Evident by him going scoreless in the 2nd half!"

Guess TheBron didn't like Terry's tattoo, huh..

The Mavericks must get some serious maverick offense going while the Heat are still weak -- just 3 super-athletes and two aging, hospital cases from the University of Florida as its real first five.

Next season, the Heat will amp the pressure by adding two more powerful and quick beastfighters who will make Detroit's garrote group of the 1990s look like a bunch of high school nerds. There will be far less unconquered space then for other clubs in the Miami Heat's Voltron Universe.

you little turd..
why did the "diva" lebron comment on the injury?

because he was ASKED.
once again, you manipulate and skew everything.
we are winning because of defense. lebrom made some shots.. so? bibby missed a few open ones that might've gone in.. so did chalmers? who cares? you think we won because lebron shot 4-5 from downtown?
we won because our defense is the best in the NBA; something i keep pointing out to your pea brain, but something you conveniently ignore.
it's defense, baby. haslem, wade, anthony, lebron, miller.. ALL OF THEM.
this isn't lucky shooting, or the "big 3", or any other hater's excuse meant to diminish the accomplishments of this team. it's a commitment to defense, and it's the reason, barring injury, that we will win this series, AND the next 4-5.
just watch, and hate away..

How old are these kids talking about "hate" in sports entertainment? Best guess: 12 -14 y/o, mental age.




Amazing basketball point, Chrissy. You really know the game.


Does anybody have the link with Dirk screaming at Marion?

Hey idiot Sledge, kill your username already. Your a joke... like Charles Barley hahahhahaha

its ova

Upon further review ...

Still fugly, still too many 3s, still too much standing around on offense, but also several easy 2s missed, Bosh's continued dependability & critical contributions at key moments, LeBron's heady, cool play throughout, Wade fearless & relentless *despite* noncalls by referees apparently intimidated by all the pre-game media HYPE HYPING Miami's alleged FT disparity from 2006 ...

Jo-el, it turns out, delivered about as much good as bad (nowhere near the total liability I initially thought)...

UD picked up where he left off in 2006 ... still prefer Cat (or Z to stretch the floor) over Damp for cameo minutes ... Spo should *NOT* waste Jones, especially in this series, against THIS team ...

OTOH, the Heat's defense wasn't nearly as efficient or suffocating as I initially thought, with Dallas missing just as gimmees as Miami ...

Sebastian Pruiti saw the same thing which the Heat *better* tighten or adjust for Game 2 ...

Ditto Miami's utter LACK of imagination attacking Dallas' zone ....

i GAVE you a basketball comment, you little turd.
you keep ignoring me. i'm 41.
i've watched this game for almost 30 years.
once again, since you're apparently a little slow:
why did the "diva" lebron comment on the injury?

because he was ASKED.
once again, you manipulate and skew everything.
we are winning because of defense. lebrom made some shots.. so? bibby missed a few open ones that might've gone in.. so did chalmers? who cares? you think we won because lebron shot 4-5 from downtown?
we won because our defense is the best in the NBA; something i keep pointing out to your pea brain, but something you conveniently ignore.
it's defense, baby. haslem, wade, anthony, lebron, miller.. ALL OF THEM.
this isn't lucky shooting, or the "big 3", or any other hater's excuse meant to diminish the accomplishments of this team. it's a commitment to defense, and it's the reason, barring injury, that we will win this series, AND the next 4-5.
just watch, and hate away..

still no comment, huh?
it's DEFENSE, you nitwit.

dallas is gonna lose because we will outrebound them, they will keep playing zone because they cant play man to man and we will keep getting the second chance points, simple as that, if i did have advice for dallas it would be to pump fake the three because we're closin out on the shooters hard

Dallas is dallying towards its death. It will make da llas stand soon, and be cremated thereafter. The real finals was over when Miami defeated Boston, as it created the team (particularly Lebron) confidence required to kill any other NBA team with a smile in his heart.

Let's see if ol man riley can get deandre jordan and carl landry, or even more powerful young free agents, as reinforcements. Let's see if Barfing Barkley will still select Chicago and Dallas next year.

Dallas never faced the same defense like Boston, Chicago and Miami during the playoff, and those three teams are the very best in the league at shutting down the opponents. I have the feeling that the Heat might go 4-0 in this series. One win in their house could be the most that Dallas can get.............GO HEAT!!

I find it humorous that Shaq is trying to steal our spotlight! First you claim you announcing your retirement on the social media so the fans would know first as if the national media don't pay attention to it!! Then you claim to want to have a brunch or something so the media can eat and talk shaq after you feed them! You a great player and all but you gotta be the most transparent dude to every stand before a mic! You are to big to act so immature!! Grow up and be a man, stop acting like a spoiled kid!!

Dallas better hope they win tonight or it's over!!! I hate we gotta win on their court but f*ck it!!!

Slegde, you do know the reason Lebron commented on Dirk's finger was becuz the reporter ASKED his thoughts right? Think first dude..

AGAIN: If you're an NBA player, you have multiple options when the media asks you questions. These include:

1. No comment.
2. Smarter comments.

Lebron, as usual, is stupid when talking to the media. It's been very well documented, since his tenure in Cleveland, the the infamous "decision" bringing his stupidity talents to S. Beach, and many other fiascos with the media.

Recently, AGAIN, he messed up talking too much crap again about Nowitzki's injury. LYING to the media, downplaying the fact that a TORN ligament in the hand is a handicap, period. As I explained, in detail, here above.

Cappice? Or no Cappice?

MUST win for Dallas, of course, tonight on game 2.

And I think they have a chance to steal it on the road. Who knows, I wouldn't bet a dime on it, but they do have a good chance. Here's why:

1. They beat the Heat twice during the regular season. I know that may not mean much, and the Heat have improved since then, but that's the fact, Jack.

2. Game one, in Miami, was very close. A few points away with 5 minutes to go. Their strategy was almost perfect:

A/ Pack the paint, shut down driving lanes
B/ Dare mediocre long distance shooters like all 3 of Miami's "big 3" to shoot long J's.
C/ Defend to the death
D/ Limit turn-overs

Worked to perfection, except, Lebron hit 4/6 from downtown: Miracle of all miracles, considering his career record from downtown. The Heat shot 46% from beyond the arc. Highly uncharacteristic and improbable.

If they apply the same exact strategy tonight, all other factors being equal, Dallas should win. The Heat won't shoot 46% from downtown again. Lebron won't hit those long daggers at the end of the 3rd and 4rth quarters again. Highly unlikely, according to the record.

Dallas needs to change only 1 thing for game 2:

Attack the offensive glass a lot more aggresively. They lost that battle 16-6 in game one. That won't cut the mustard in game 2.

And, for those who WATCHED the game, somewhat objectively, ---occasionally taking off those dark Heat Homer glasses-- Dallas missed numerous WIDE OPEN shots they normally make. Granted, Miami's defense is great, and their athletic closing-up speed to defend is awesome, but if you SAW the game, Dallas had tons of wide open looks, notably for Peja and Terry.

Conversely, Miami hit crucial shots they normally do NOT make. Since when is Lebron a 90% shooter from downtown? Since when does Miami hit 46% from a distance? Try 33% or so, for their careers.

Miami better attack the rim a lot more instead of relying on those long bombs late in the game to win tonight. They probably wouldn't fall again.

Sludge you are the copy and paste king! Your act is tired and old! Your constantly changing from team to team and your theories keep getting bashed like the HEAT opponents!! If you stfu, just maybe you will learn something!!

What exactly is "closing-up speed"? That is something new to me.

I am going to try something here. I think you can take anything Sledge writes change a few words and it works for either team. Let's try.

And, for those who WATCHED the game, somewhat objectively, ---occasionally taking off those dark Heat Hater glasses-- Miami missed numerous WIDE OPEN shots they normally make. Granted, Dallas' defense is good, and their zone defense is above average, but if you SAW the game, Miami had tons of wide open looks, notably for Bibby, Miller, Chalmers and Lebron.

Conversely, Dallas hit crucial shots they normally do NOT make. Since when is Deshawn Stevenson a 67% shooter from downtown? Try 33% or so, for his careers.

Dallas better attack the rim a lot more instead of relying on those long bombs late in the game to win tonight. They probably wouldn't fall again.

What do you guys think?

"Closing-up speed, defensively, means how fast man-to-man or help defenders get to the opposing shooter, son.

Here's Ira's way of putting it:

"The way this team gets to shooters borders on remarkable. The same shots that were there against the Blazers, Lakers and Thunder appeared to be there Tuesday for the Mavericks, and then — poof! — they were gone. By the time Jason Terry or Peja Stojakovic were locked and loaded, it’s as if the Heat players were saying, “I’d like you to meet my good friend, Mr. Hand.” The close-out speed was stunning. It really is something you need to see in person, when you can view the entire court at the same time. This isn’t five-men-on-a-string, this is five-men-on-a-slingshot."

The Heat are very good at this, but I disagree that Dallas missed so many open shots they normally make just because of Miami's superb defense. That's because I watched the game twice. The second time I was perfectly sober.

And NO:

Miami does not make those shots normally.

Dallas does.

Unless you are allegic to mathematics, statics, history and other crucial subjects you might be flunking in high school.

*statistics, before some retarded moron jumps on the typo.

Hey Sledge Ira calls it "close-out speed" that I know of. Its the "close-up speed" that is new to me. As you like to say read 3rd and 4th words in Ira's 4th sentence in case your "Heat Hater Glasses" are too dark!!!

That's gotta be one of the dumbest comments I've read today, and I read a lot.

Here are my highscool mathematics/statistics

M. Miller Career 3pt% = 40%
M. Bibby Career 3pt% = 38%
M. Chalmers Career 3pt% = 35%


D. Nowitsky Career 3pt% = 38%
P. Stojakovic Career 3pt% = 40%
J. Terry Career 3pt% = 38%

To someone in Dark Heat Hater Glasses that still has to look pretty even!!!

Yes to the average fan close-out and close-up is a minor slip up but to an extremely knowledgeable basketball mind such as yourself I would expect more!!! I think if you would concentrate on only one blog vs 15 you might have a little better focus!!!

The Dirk excuse machine is crankin up...guy is soft plain and simple. The fact is that Dallas has 1 all-star surrounded by role players and the Heat has more top tier talent. That's all, see ya next year when teams scramble to compete against this power house. Dallas has no shot the way they are currently constructed, they have overachieved this season and should be proud of that. Meanwhile the Heat has lived up to expectations and squashed all the doubters with only 3 losses the entire post season.

DUDE: What does Lebron shoot from downtown? Or wade or Bosh, can you read?

About Nowitzki, and injuries at this stage:

Yes, Nowitzki won't be as effective with that hand injury and a freakin' splint in the hand.

But most players are banged-up after 82 games, and the the brutal playoff battles. For one, I'm sure D. Wade is hurting. By his own admission, althought he downplays it, as Dirk did too.

The problem for Dallas is that Nowitzki does not have a Lebron James to take over and cover his arse. If Dirk is not 100% the Mavs are toast. Wade is far from 100%, but the Heat have other major weapons.

DUDE: Can you read?

"Miami does not make those shots normally"

Why does three major minute loggers percentages not matter??? I can answer it for you because that hurts your argument vs helping it so you choose to ignore it. Again if you want to have discussions then be open to both sides of the coin. AKA take off the Heat Hater Glasses!!!

Scroll up and READ, son. Tired of tired..

Lebron shot 80% from downtown last game.

Lost in the predictable media babble is that this team is winning with TEAM DEFENSE. It's not just 'the big three', but everybody on this team has bought into the system. This team is showing you what unselfishness looks like. They have the same mentality as the 2006 team (minus shaq - who was only motivated by one-upping Kome) which is team first. They are handlin' their d*mn business! And, oh yeah, they are 5-0 since UD came back - coincidence?

Like I said: let Lebron shoot 80% from downtown again tonight. Good luck.

Just leave trolllolololololl

wooooooooooow talk about celebratin too early, i hope they learn from this, we still got this though

no one celebrated.. they collapsed defensively. they got a reminder that the intensity needs to go 4 quarters; an easier feat when you're playing from behind, and a harder feat when you're up.
wade found his stroke, so did bibby..
i'm not worried, but we definitely made it harder for ourselves..

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