Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Finals- Mavs vs Heat: Game 1

After waiting nearly a week after defeating Oklahoma City in five games, the Dallas Mavericks returned to the court to play the Miami Heat in the Finals once again since their last Finals meeting in 2006.

The Mavericks entered Game 1 of the Finals hoping to end the Heat's 8-0 post-season record at home while continuing their 5-game road playoff winning streak.

The Heat had other things in mind as they found success in getting the Game 1 victory over Dallas to put the Mavs in a 1-0 series hole for the first time this post-season.

The Mavericks opened up the first quarter with trouble on the offensive end as they started just 1 for 7 from the floor. Despite their adversity, they fought back with consecutive 3-pointers by Jason Kidd to get back into the game while Marion and Stevenson worked together to try and defend sharp shooters James and Wade. Terry took a 2 for 2 trip to the free throw line after a hard foul from Lebron to allow Dallas to a 17-16 lead at the end of the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the Heat's big three brought all the attention to themselves as Dirk did the same. Marion continued to scored follow by an alley-oop and-1 finish by Chander off an assist from Kidd to push the Mavs to another 1 point lead, 44-43, to end the second quarter.

Both teams had trouble offensively in the first half, as the Mavs outshot the Heat, 38.2% to 36.6%. At the half, Dirk and Terry combined for 25 points while Miami's big three combined for 30.

The third quarter would be different for the Mavs as they started off on a 7-0 run. However, the Heat took advantage of the Mavs' turnovers and Lebron hit a fadeaway 3-pointer at the buzzer to take a 65-61 lead to end the third.

The Mavericks' defense took it up a notch in the final quarter to stay in the game until Haslem scored an and-1 over Dirk in the lane; Dallas fell in a 75-69 hole with just under 7 minutes to play. Marion tried his best to spark the Mavs on the offensive end but his efforts were no use as Wade swished in a 3-pointer to put Miami up 82-73 with 3 minutes remaining. This was then followed by an and-1 dunk by Lebron to put the Heat back up by 10 in the final minutes, as Dallas started to lose hope of a comeback. Despite the lost hope, Dirk continued to fight, even after tearing a tendon in his finger during the fourth quarter when his hand got tangled up during an attempt to steal the ball from Bosh. He took a 2 for 2 trip to the line to cut the deficit to 6, 85-79, with 1:36 to go. Bosh dunked on the other end followed by another by James to cap off their lead at 92-84 and gain the 1-0 series lead.

Without much help from anyone else, Dirk finished with a game-high 27 points while Marion added 16 points and 10 rebounds. Terry was the only other Mav in double figures with 12 points (all in the first half), but hit just 3 of 10 from the floor. Barea struggled as well hitting just 1 of 8. This led to Dallas' bench being unusually outscored by Miami's, 27-17.

For the Heat, Lebron finished with 24 points while Wade had 22 points and Bosh added 19 points to go along with 28 rebounds combined from the big three.

The Heat outshot the Mavs, 38.8% to 37.3% as well as out-rebounded the Mavs, 46-36 (16 Heat offensive rebounds). Miami also bettered Dallas' 9 for 22 from beyond the arc with 11 of 24.

The Mavericks will now head into Game 2, Thursday night, hoping to steal home-court advantage in their second opportunity.

**Game 2 will air on ABC, Thursday, June 2nd at 9pm ET.

Carlisle, Nowitzki, and Marion talk about the Mavs Game 1 loss as well as Dirk's injured finger.

Dirk Nowitzki flips up a shot

Terry goes up for a dunk over Lebron

Bosh makes a move to the basket

Lebron shoots a jumper

Bosh goes up for a dunk through the Mavs' defense

Dirk tries to get a shot up over Bosh

Wade tries to drive through Dallas' defense

Chandler goes up for the dunk over Joel Anthony

Dirk makes a strong move to the basket

Lebron goes up for a monstrous jam to end the game

Photo Credits- NBAE/Getty Images:
Mike Ehrmann
Garrett Ellwood
Marc Serota


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Finals- Mavs vs Heat: Game 1