Including the regular season, the Chicago Bulls were 53-0 when leading by double-digits in the fourth quarter. So, with only 3:14 remaining in Game 5, and the Bulls leading by 12 points a win appeared all but certain.LeBron isn't just a Majestic King and Basketball Messiah, mind you, he's a prophet. Remember his sage Tweet: "Crazy. Karma is a b****. Gets you every time. Its [sic] not good to wish bad on anybody. God sees everything!"
The Miami Heat had other plans though, finishing the game on an 18-3 run to advance to the NBA Finals for the second time in franchise history.
According to 10,000 simulations done by Accuscore.com, the Heat had just a 1 percent chance of winning the game with 3:14 remaining.
Just like it's been all season, the "Big Three" for Miami were at the center of it all, scoring 69 of the team's 83 points, including the last 33.
It wasn't all good for the trio though; through three quarters they combined for as many field goals as turnovers (13).
The main culprit was Dwyane Wade, who committed nine turnovers to tie his playoff career-high and the franchise playoff record.
However, along with LeBron James, the pair came alive scoring 22 points in the final frame, while connecting on their last six field goal attempts, three of which came from behind the 3-point line.
Labels: Bawful After Dark
Magic: KD 50 in a loss
JB: J.J. with 25-8 in DAL win
Wilbon: OKC win tonight
Labels: Bawful After Dark
As mentioned the Thunder were outscored by 15 points in the final minutes of regulation, and a lot of that was because their offense changed drastically when James Harden fouled out at the 4:48 mark. Prior to Harden fouling out, the Thunder focused their offensive attention on the inside game. After Harden fouled out, though, the Thunder settled for long-range shots, missing their only two field goal attempts inside of 15 feet in the last nine minutes and 48 seconds of the game.Best of the Night: Dirk Nowitzki: More from ESPN Stats and Info:
The Thunder's lackluster offense without Harden was also exposed in the pick-and-roll game. The Thunder ran 25 pick-and-roll plays prior to Harden fouling out but ran just two afterward. The transition offense also stalled, with the Thunder picking up 17 points on 14 transition plays prior to Harden fouling out. Afterward, the Thunder failed to score on their only transition play. This postseason, Harden has scored the eighth most points as a pick-and-roll ball handler and the sixth most transition points.
A huge part of the Mavericks comeback was Dirk Nowitzki who finished with his second 40-point game this postseason (both this series) and seventh of his career. After shooting 60.0 percent from the field in Game 4 and 80.0 percent in Game 1, the Elias Sports Bureau tells us that Nowitzki is the first player to record two games with 40 points while shooting at least 60.0 percent from the floor in the same playoff series since Shaquille O'Neal had a pair of games like that for the Los Angels Lakers in the 2000 Finals against the Indiana Pacers. For his playoff career, Nowitzki is 10-1 when he scores more than 35 points with his only loss coming in a 42-point performance in 2001 against the San Antonio Spurs.Give Dirk his props. Dude is awesome.
Oh and if that's not enough, Nowtizki is 48-for-50 from the free throw line this postseason including the two clutch game-tying free throws he drained with six seconds left in regulation of Monday’s win.
Labels: Bawful After Dark
Mavs-Thunder: Eric Maynor bricked once and lost the rock once as well for a +2 in 5:54, while Daequan Cook baked two bricks from...uh...Bricktown and fouled thricely for a +5 in 14:03.
Bulls-Heat: Gee, Mr. Joakim Noah, the fact you are in the lacktion report probably means you didn't help the moo machine beat out South Beach.
In 29:04 as starting big man, five boards and six assists were negated by four bricks, two turnovers, and five fouls for a 7:6 Voskuhl. yikes.
Omer Asik also represented the windy city well with two fouls countering a board in 15:21 for a 2:1 Voskuhl.
Meanwhile, Miami's Mike Miller fouled and bricked twice each (once from...uh...Brickell) and lost the rock once in 12:54 for a celebratory +5 suck differential.
The Dunk and The Beard and The Miss all had a hand in dooming the Mavericks in Game 2 of the West Finals.I guess I see where Engel is coming from. Although by suggesting that the Mavs' problem was that they didn't outscore a team that was shooting lights out feels a little Lawler's Law-y to me. I still think the problem was the _efense.
What eventually led to OKC 106, Mavs 100, though, was The Idiocy.
No acceptable explanation exists for why Dirk Nowitzki only took two shots in the third quarter.
Two bleeping shots.
He did not have a single point in the third quarter, which is a sure sign of adjustment/point guard/coaching/all around Mavs fail. It was not as if OKC was doing a great job on Dirk, or even a good one.
They just were not forced to do any job at all on him for 12 minutes.
And if proof were somehow needed of this, in the fourth, when Dallas started again feeding him on trip after trip, he jumped in exactly where he left off in Game 1.
Just like in Game 1, OKC had absolutely no answer for The White Mamba or Dirty Dirk or The Big German, for my fans who prefer to keep nicknames old-school and consistent.
So did he get enough touches?
"Yeah, I thought he got enough touches" a testy Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said before reversing direction and launching into a tirade against his defense.
I beg to differ, Rick. Seventeen shots is not enough for Dirk, not in a loss, not when Kevin Durant has 23, especially not coming off of his 48-point dominance in Game 1.
Feed your beast. And once Dirk became re-introduced, Game 2 suddenly went double D and I am not talking about crowd eye candy.
Labels: Bawful After Dark
Dirk Nowitzki scored 48 points, his sixth career 40-point playoff game, finishing two points shy of his playoff career-high.I think Luc Richard Mbah a Moute needs to rewrite his scouting report to read simply: HIDE YOUR WOMEN, CHILDREN, AND ALL YOUR VALUABLES. YOU CANNOT STOP DIRK NOWITZKI.
Among active players, only Shaquille O'Neal (12), Kobe Bryant (11) and LeBron James (nine) have more career 40-point playoff games.
Nowitzki set an NBA record by going 24-for-24 from the free throw line, the most free throws made in a single game without a miss -- regular season or postseason.
He drew fouls from seven different Thunder defenders, including all five of Serge Ibaka's. Dirk went 7-for-9 when guarded by Ibaka, including 6-for-8 on post-up plays.
Combining field goal attempts and free throw attempts, the ball left Dirk Nowitzki's hand 39 times tonight; 36 of those times, it went in the hoop.
Nowitzki attempted just 15 shots, the second-fewest field goal attempts in a 40-point playoff game in NBA history.
Only Terry Porter, back in 1992 for the Portland Trail Blazers, needed fewer attempts (41 points on 14 attempts) to reach the 40-point plateau. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, his field-goal percentage of 80.0 is tied for the highest ever in a Conference finals game (minimum 15 FGA).
The Minnesota Timberwolves have had the worst history of any team in the NBA Draft Lottery.The Los Angeles Clippers: But wait. There's more:
Despite finishing in the lottery in 14 of their 22 seasons, the Minnesota Timberwolves have never had the No. 1 draft pick.
In fact, after losing out on the first pick to the Cleveland Cavaliers last night, this will be the first time they've even had the No. 2 pick
The Wolves have had zero luck. In the 14 years they've been in the lottery, they have never moved up and 8 times they've moved down.
In 1992, they had the league's worst record and ended up at No. 3. Picks One and Two were Shaquille O'Neal and Alonzo Mourning
GM David Kahn said what everyone was thinking after Cavs owner Dan Gilbert sent his 14-year-old son (who has a rare nerve disorder) to represent Cleveland.
"This league has a habit, and I am just going to say habit, of producing some pretty incredible story lines," said Kahn. "As soon as the 14-year-old kid joined us, we were toast."
We assume he's only (half) joking? Though more than a few NBA fans are still convinced that the Knicks didn't win the very first Lottery (and Patrick Ewing) on an entirely fair draw.
The worst part is that the Cavs, who were stabbed in the heart by LeBron James last summer, didn't even win with their own pick. (As the second worst team, they had has a 19% chance of nabbing No. 1 overall.) They won with a Clippers pick that they got in a trade ... that had a 2.8% chance of winning. Cleveland now has two of the top 4 picks.Ah, the Clippers. No matter what happens, no matter the circumstances, they are and always will be who we thought they were. On the bright side, they got Mo Williams and Jamario Moon in the trade that sent that pick to Cleveland...