Blog Entry

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

Posted on: May 27, 2011 3:22 am
Edited on: May 27, 2011 6:12 am

Posted by Matt Moore

You're going to have the year 2006 emblazoned into your brain over the next five to 10 days if you pay attention to NBA coverage at all. It's going to dominate the talk since these two teams, the Heat and the Mavericks, met five years ago for the title. Everything will be examined in the same context and talk of the officials will be prime in Dallas, and talk of Wade's brilliance will be brought up in Miami, along with Udonis Haslem and his defense on Dirk Nowitzki. Let me stop you there.

The coaches are different. The rosters are different. The identities are different. The styles are different. The approaches are different. Everything is different. If you think that series defines Dirk's career or ability to succeed in the clutch, you just crawled out from under a rock. If you think Wade's still able to draw contact like he did in that series you're bonkers. If you think anything compares to the effect LeBron James can have on this series, you're out of your gourd.

This is not 2006.

This is 2011, and here are your NBA Finals storylines. 

Can Dallas' defense step up? 

The Mavericks gave up a 106.1 defensive efficiency in the playoffs this season through the Western Conference finals. That's seventh-best of all the teams in the league. Sure, they had more games to try and suffer through. But the reality is that the Mavericks for long stretches of the Western Conference Playoffs couldn't get stops. They found ways down the stretch to cut off the Thunder but it won't be nearly as easy against the Heat. We know the Heat's defense is legit. We know Miami's offense is legit. We know the Mavericks' offense is legit. But with so many size issues for the Mavericks, we're going to have questions about how they guard the Heat. Once again the absence of Caron Butler is extremely damaging for Dallas. The Mavericks will wind up with one of the following guarding Dwyane Wade: Jason Kidd, DeShawn Stevenson, Peja Stojakovic, Jose Barea, or Corey Brewer. That does not bode well. Even more concerning is Shawn Marion, as well as he played against Kevin Durant, guarding LeBron James.  No one can guard those players. But the Mavericks are especially ill-equipped to stop them. If the Mavericks' were ever going to whip out a zone, now might be the time. 

Will point guard play finally hurt the Heat?

Jrue Holiday did it a bit, but it didn't matter. Rajon Rondo was ... er ... not the same. Derrick Rose was shut down due to the offensive weapons surrounding him, or lack thereof, allowing James and Wade to freelance on him with an additional help defender on the double. But the Heat are facing a different beast in Jason Kidd. Kidd's not young, athletic (anymore, comparatively, though he can still get up and down the floor and has a decent amount of muscle). He's not going to try and torch the Heat on drives. He's just going to make the right play. Kidd will try and outsmart the Heat's athleticism and ability with savvy. He'll make passes they don't anticipate and aren't used to, slip between defenders only to beat their reactions defensively and make the right pass. Throw in Kidd's surprising recent ability to hit open 3-pointers and the Heat might be surprised at the old veteran working his Magic

Mavericks on the verge of validation

Dirk Nowitkzi is one of the best players of the past 10 years and he has no rings. Jason Kidd is a surefire Hall of Famer and doesn't have a ring. Jason Terrry has been a fourth-quarter maestro for the same franchise for the same length of time as Nowitzki, no ring. Mark Cuban has sunk more than $800 million into trying to earn a championship, no ring. Rick Carlisle led successful teams in Indiana and Detroit, no ring. This series is their best shot and in all likelihood, their last chance. This is everything for the Mavericks. The Heat have years to make another run. For the Mavericks, this is their absolute best chance at a title, to catch the Heat confident and still trying to figure themselves out. This isn't just an exciting shot at a title, it's about salvaging legacies and cementing greatness. 

The promise of 'The Decision'

They're there. They have to win four games and they will have backed it all up. All the talk, all the pomp, all the circumstance, all the pyro. The Heat will have lived up to their hype. The only way to shut up critics is to win it all. Miami's not just within sight of it, they're on the doorstep. They just beat the defending Eastern Conference champs and the top seed in the East featuring the best defensive team in the league. Yes, everyone will still regard James as arrogant, and question the value of teaming up with other elite teammates. But the narrative will start to shift if they win the title. James becomes a winner, Wade a two-time champ, and Erik Spoelstra a championship coach. Lose, and everyone's harshest criticism rings true.  Everything changes in four more games, either way. 


Since: Jul 24, 2009
Posted on: May 30, 2011 9:28 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006's a little mojo for the Mavericks; *%GFYU)$$FT^&IJUHYY^$#(&%H**%VBHY&W.   There.

Since: Jan 15, 2011
Posted on: May 29, 2011 8:11 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

Please Mavs win. I hate how the Heat get almost every foul call Innocent and are so overraded. The Mavs are very respectable. Vice verca for the Heat.Cool

Since: Nov 25, 2009
Posted on: May 29, 2011 12:03 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

Whoever wins, this should be a great series as long as the fouls are called evenly.  I wouldn't consider myself a Dallas fan, but for this series I am.  Miami losing would be good for the NBA but David Stern does NOT like Mark Cuban and I don't need to say what that means.  Aside from the Heat true fans, and their masses of bandwagon fans nobody should want Miami to win.  There are not enough superstars in the league to have more than a few teams hording the talent.  The casual (non Heat) fan will stop watching when/if it becomes apparent that their teams cannot compete against the All-Star team.

Please please please... Mavs in a sweep.  For the good of basketball.

Since: Dec 13, 2008
Posted on: May 29, 2011 8:33 am

2006 I dont think so

In this series it will be all about the bench. Yes, Miami is very powerful with Wade, LBJ and Bosch.  One fact that I have seen in Mavericks is they know how to frustrate opponents to point of technical and flagarent fouls. This was seen in the regular season as well as in the Lakers and Thunder series.  If even one component of the Miami trio gets into foul trouble then the Mavericks will have all out access to scoring the points they are used to scoring.  

With Miami I can see that they also have a STRONG bench that is equal to Dallas. This will pose a problem to Mavericks if they cannot create a stop on any of the trio. 

Mavericks in 7

Since: Sep 27, 2007
Posted on: May 29, 2011 7:46 am

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

its all good to talk trash about this and that but to be honest with you all iI hear is who is gonna stop dirk who is gonna stop dirk. truthfully nobody can stop dirk completely, he is gonna get his regardless. this series will be based on what the other players do and the mismatches that both teams can present one another. that favors miami. lebron and wade can get theirs seemingly at will against kidd, terry ,berrera and stevenson. and thats not even counting on chris bosh. mario chalmers and bibby will be able to play in this series because kidd doesnt loom to big as a scoring threat or penetrator anymore thus giving miami guards more time on the floor. if dallas plays that zone you will see more of james jones and mike miller in this series from three and possibly eddie house. this will be a good series regardless may the best team wim win.. miami in 6

Since: May 2, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2011 11:00 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

(reply to lee 3022)   I have for 20 years listen and read comments from people who never spent one penny of their hard earned on any thing but their mouth. Today would be a great day for you to put some green on where your mouth  has now led you...sell your car..your house that crystal ball and head on down to Caesars palace and lay it all on your heat.. and if by chance they are better than the best three point shooting team in the NBA, and if that james guy is so much better than the best pure shooter in the NBA and if their bench is that much better you will be able to take a curise to mexico and the hell going on down there.. but if not and you are are on the street no home , walking to the food bank.. be sure what you say has merit and then back your play with your green.. till them friend.. take care out there!....VegasHyroler...... ps: the western confrence was the toughest group in the league by  6 to 1

Since: Dec 5, 2009
Posted on: May 28, 2011 10:55 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

 Leave it up to a Heat fan to talk up Joel Anthony.. Carlos Boozer and Kevin Garnett?? Last time I checked, they weren't lighting it up in the postseason. Hell, they're halfway to rocking chairs at this point.

 Tell me how you guard a fade-away from a 7 foot forward that can also get you in the air. It's almost impossible. Dirk is unguardable right now. He's also faced more noteable players than a Joel Anthony.

Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: May 28, 2011 2:43 pm

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

Yes Man, Joel Anthony.  I can see you dont watch much basketball at least you dont watch Heat basketball.  Joel Anthony might not score, but the DEFENSE is unbelievable (ask Garnett, Boozer, or Stoudemire)  He gets Offensive Rebounds and he blocks shots. 
All these analyst talking about how Lebron will defend Yellowviski.  They dont understand it will be JOEL and Yellowviski has not seen a Big Man this fast on defense in the playoffs. 

Since: Feb 13, 2009
Posted on: May 28, 2011 6:06 am

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

In theory you are right

But this is NBA, not a playground. There are refs.

Matrix is more than capable of limiting James to playing average for James (under 30ppg under 45% FG) which should have been enough.

Dirk should dispose Bosh like he has never been born.

Eastern conferrence numbers are inflated.

Tyson should kill Anthony (literally) - CHeat don't have neither Pekins nor Collison nor Ibaka nor Bynum nor Pau.

But in the real world Heat will live on free throw line. Chandler will sit with fouls. Dirk will get murdered when working low block with no calls.
CHeat will win the series.  The most ironic is - if Dallas play great against CHeat - they loose in 5, if Dallas plays mediocre they loose in 6.



Since: Nov 14, 2006
Posted on: May 28, 2011 1:31 am

NBA Finals Storylines: It Ain't 2006

This guy is a retard... and he is a bandwagon rider

1) There benches are equal... Mavs have barea and terry, Heat have haslem and miller.

2) Chandler is sorta better but not that much better, combo of haslem and anthony could wear him out.

3) LeBron is Wayyyy better than Dirk, he will dominate marion, James has PROVEN he can close a game.

Overall heat is better, Mavss cant contain wade or james, HEAT in 6!!!!!!!!

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