Just finished watching the Chicago Thunder squander away a win against a Miami Heat team that may yet irritate the hell out of all us in a couple of weeks.
I will remain the optimist and say, "Let's Go Mavs! Let's do this for all the little schools that never had a chance to get here."
This is NOT a repeat of the 2006 Finals. These are dramatically different rosters. For starters, Erick Dampier is no longer stealing money from the Mavs. Josh Howard is teasing another team elsewhere.
The Mavs swept the season series against the Heat this season, but those games are totally meaningless. They were meaningless when they played them. The Heat didn't care when they played the Mavs.
November 27, 2010: Mavs 106, Heat 95 in Dallas
Heat held a player's-only team meeting after this loss. They decided they would try ... when they had to.
December 20, 2010: Mavs 98, Heat 96 in Miami
Mavs win snapped Heat win streak at 12.
The Truth I: The Heat will be the favorites. They have their lineup when GM Dwyane Wade colluded with LeBron James last offseason to make Pat Riley look like he was the man calling the shots on player acquisitions. Udonis Haslem is playing, so is Mike Miller, and the Heat are rolling.
The Truth II: The Mavs have the "It" factor going this postseason, and Dirk is totally and completely locked in.
Should be fun.
Prediction: Mavs in six*