Thursday, May 26, 2011

WCF- Mavs vs OKC: Game 5

With one win, the Mavericks would have the opportunity that their franchise has only seen once before in 2006. With one win, the Mavericks would bring an end to Oklahoma City Thunder's dreams of a championship.

The Mavericks hoped to achieve one more victory over OKC in their 3-1 series lead to be crowned Western Conference Champs and move on to the NBA Finals. Dallas was successful as they made another late comeback to defeat the Thunder.

The Mavericks came out in the first quarter with a quick start, gaining a fast 8-2 lead. Chandler scored the first 13 points of the night for Dallas while the Thunder was led by Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook who brought their team to a 27-26 lead at the end of the first quarter.

In the first quarter, the Mavs hit just 9 of 24 from the floor while OKC hit 10 of 23.

The youth of OKC's bench gave them a spark led by Harden to go on an 11-2 run to push their lead to 38-30. Chandler picked up his third personal foul while the Thunder held onto the lead. Dallas climbed within 2, after Jason Terry swished in a 3-pointer with a minute to go, before receiving his third foul. The Thunder took a 55-52 lead heading into halftime.

In the first half, Dirk's 13 points and Barea and Marion's combined 21 were not enough to take the lead. Durant and Westbrook combined for 26 points while Harden added 16 off the bench to help outshoot the Mavs, 47.7% to 45.2%.

The Thunder's offense became stagnant as they continued their slump from the end of the second of 11 straight misses. This gave the Mavs an opportunity to fight back as they did just that and tied the game at 59. Peja swished in a 3-pointer to give the Mavs their first lead since a few minutes into the second quarter. Westbrook pushed Terry after a whistle which led him to receive a technical foul. But despite their frustration, the Thunder went on a 9-0 run to regain the lead back to 72-66, and end the third quarter up 76-72.

A bucket by Westbrook and a Durant 3-pointer started off the fourth quarter for the Thunder as they opened up an 85-77 lead with 9 minutes left in the game. OKC continued to lead with a couple baskets until Marion took a 2 for 2 trip to the line with 4 minutes left to cut Dallas' deficit to 92-90 as well as going on a 7-2 run until Durant finally scored to conclude it. Marion continued to keep the Mavs in the game while the rest of the team was able to inch their way back with trips to the foul line. Nowitzki swished in a 3-pointer followed by a Terry steal, leading to another 3-pointer by Dirk to put the Mavs up 95-94 with a minute to go. Marion then had an and-1 dunk to put Dallas up by 4 with 48 ticks left. But OKC wasn't done; Westbrook fouled Chandler out and cut Dallas' lead to two with 39 seconds to go. Dirk took a trip to the line to extend the lead back to 4 with 13 seconds on the clock. The Thunder had a chance to come back but both Durant and Harden missed from long range in the final seconds, sending the Mavs to the Finals as they ended the game on a 17-6 run.

Dirk and Marion both finished with a team-high 26 points, with Dirk grabbing 9 rebounds and Marion grabbing 8 of his own as well as 3 blocks. Off the bench, Barea had 14 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists while Terry added 12 points of his own to make it four Mavs in double figures. Kidd also had a game-high 10 assists.

For the Thunder, Westbrook finished wit ha game-high 31 points to lead four OKC players in double figures as well. Durant and Harden both had 23 points.

The Mavs took this victory despite being outshot, 42.7% to 41.0% as well as being out-rebounded, 49-44. The Thunder also had a 50-44 edge in points in the pain. Dallas managed to turn 13 OKC turnovers into 21 points while OKC turned 12 turnovers into just 8 points.

The Mavericks will now await the winner of the Heat Bulls series to see who they will face in the Finals.


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MyDallasMavs: WCF- Mavs vs OKC: Game 5

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WCF- Mavs vs OKC: Game 5