Westbrook’s Triple Threat Is Crucial

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS (DALLAS OFFICE) – If three rounds of the NBA playoffs have taught us anything here at HT, it’s that conventional wisdom no longer applies around these parts.

Take a look at the last four teams standing. Two of them, the Oklahoma City Thunder and Chicago Bulls, are led by guys barely old enough to legally purchase adult beverages.

That’s why we’re tossing out the conventional point guard manual for the Western Conference finals, where Thunder blur Russell Westbrook will square off against Jason Kidd, an all-time great at the position who, even at 38, remains one of the most dangerous players in the game.

But not even Kidd should be able to handle the fiery Westbrook, who has taken loads of criticism during this postseason for being more of a scorer rather than a facilitator and overall floor general. Westbrook has extra gears that only a handful of players in the league can match, guys like league MVP Derrick Rose.

Much like Rose in the Eastern Conference finals, Westbrook’s triple-threat (scorer, facilitator, defender) abilities make him the most crucial player in the Western Conference finals.

A scorer like Kevin Durant can push his team over the top when he’s rolling, the way he did in the Thunder’s Game 7 win Sunday over our beloved Hang Time Grizzlies. But a triple threat changes the complexion of games by delivering in phase of the game, the way Westbrook did with his Game 7 triple-double of 14 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists.

Just so we’re clear on how ridiculous a performance this was from Westbrook, understand that this was the first triple-double in a Game 7 since Scottie Pippen did it in 1992. It was only the fifth in Game 7 history, putting Westbrook on a short list that includes Pippen, Jerry West, Larry Bird and James Worthy.

Much more important for Westbrook, though, was the way his work was received by his teammates, as evidenced by Nick Collison‘s words to the Oklahoman:

“I thought he was great,” said Nick Collison, who complemented Westbrook as the Thunder’s defensive savior with his performance on Zach Randolph.

“He was trying to do everything he could to help us win.”

Thunder coach Scott Brooks nailed it when he described Westbrook’s play after that Game 7 win.

“He gets picked on a little bit, but Russell keeps playing,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. “He keeps improving. He keeps getting better. Tonight he controlled the game. He didn’t shoot the ball very well, but he controlled the basketball game. He controlled us on offense. He controlled us on defense. He had us in sets. He had us in the right schemes defensively.”

If Westbrook keeps it up against the Mavericks, he’ll go a long way towards shutting up his critics — not to mention making life miserable for Kidd and the rest of the Mavericks’ guards charged with trying to slow him down.

161 Comments

  1. knowlegeandtruth says:

    My thoughts on game 1: If I was a Mavs fan, I wouldn’t exactly be thrilled with that win for several reasons.. I’d ttake it, surre, but not be super stoked about it.. My friend in Dallas texted me in the 4th and said it better than I could….

    “I dont’ like it…. Not at all. Record setting night for Dirk, Westbrook having his worst game i’ve seen and Ibaka adjusting to the new style in game 1 against an opponent thats had over a week to prepare, unreal game of his life and no in game adjustments from OKC for JJ,, refs being whistle happy and slowing the game down to Maverick pace, tons of Thunder in foul trouble…. So why is my team only up 6 with less than a minute to go?”

    As a Thunder fan, am I worried? Not only am I not worried, but for all of that to go the Mavs way for them to barely win, I’d say that I’ve almost never been this happy after a Thunder loss. If Westbrook even has a terrible game and not an ultra terrible game, the Thunder probably win, despite all that went right for Dallas.

    • MFFL says:

      I am bookmarking this blog just so I can come back and see you “not worried” after Thursdays loss.

    • gutix says:

      Man, you are really the ultimate fan, I told you yesterday that you look at stats only in your favor, well, game 1 has also a lot of ways to read. I’m a mavs fan and I’m worried, worried for the great potential this OKC team has but next game can turn out to be a close game as well as it can turn into a blowout by either team, Again, I think the experience is the key in this series because if it depended on potential OKC would win the series very easily, that’s why I think Dallas has to win now because if they don’t defeat OKC this year it’s very unlikely they will next year.

      A lot it’s been said about the refs but OKC had more free throws and you have to understand, Noone can guard Dirk, it’s really interesting to see what Brooks decides to do in game 2. If he double team Dirk we may get the blowout that generally follows a so close game.

      And finally knowlessandhope, I could also think that after a monster game by Durant, OKC could not win. Yeah, maybe Westbrook will play better but nothing guarantees Durant will have the same game and maybe if Westbrook plays better maybe Harden won’t have the game he had. I would also be worried in your place. At the very least, I wouldn’t say that I’m so happy after Dirk’s performance last night because he’s the most regular of the 3 superstars in this series.

  2. Mavs will beat the Thunder says:

    Good Gravy!

    http://www.nba.com/statscube/team-vs-team.html#Thunder-vs-Dallas-Mavericks|1610612760,1610612742;season=r

    there’s the stats. They are in favor of my team. But I’m done arguing, like you said the stats speak for themselves.

    • Brian says:

      Stats for a line-up that you didn’t see in the regular season, moron. Stats like these actually DON”T count if they were all against the pre-trade line-up.

  3. adub says:

    Westbrook’s gonna destroy you guys!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Anthony Winston says:

    Dallas beat a tired team in L.A, who played in the last three finals. We forget the lakers beat them two out of three in the regular season and blew them out the last two. Plus with all of the turmoil ging on in L.A’s locker room we just imploded so Mav’s fan don’t use that as your measuring stick. Some hwere down the line the Mav’s and Dirk will choke like they did against Miami in 06. Jason Terry was hot too until Miami turned up the heat.

  5. Kings says:

    who will win the close games?
    the mav’s will execute better down the stretch after timeouts and within 3-4 min mark.
    these games will be the difference.

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      Now, see… This is actually a very good point. I do, infact ,give extreme kudos for good points, and this is one. Plays out of timeouts, close game offense and, like I’ve said before a few times, if the Mavs can keep the games in OKC close and OKC doesn’t win 1 of the first 2 in Dallas, it will be because of what you stated: offense out of timeouts, siituational set plays and close game execution.

      Not many time I’lve said this to a Mavs fan…. but well, played, sir.

  6. Objective says:

    So guys… first of all, I am not Native English, so please dont be rude if my English is not so perfect.

    The series is not clear at all. Actually, OKC and Mavs Fans should admit that. I think just because Mavs are experts’ favorites, it is the OKC fans complaining and giving loads of arguments why OKC are favored.
    However what some of you guys, especially knowledgeandtruth, do, is ridiculous. Sometimes, these guys state that Stats are nonsense (look at seeds. Mavs, Grizz, Lakers blabla) And then the other time they pull out some stats saying these stats are important. Just shut up! Stats can be a indicator but no way a proof or whatever! Saying the Grizz have a positive score in RS against the Mavs and OKC DID win against the Grizz, so OKC will win the series is ridiculous. So everyone competing rater seriously in any kind of sports will find a path being stronger than the world champ! Stop this childish attitude!

    So I leave stats out! Everybody has to admit that the Mavs so far have played excellent Playoffs. No matter if the Lakers were the Lakers of 2010 or 1965 or whatever. This is pure gambling and no evidence can be given. OKC have a strong team, true. This will be a hard series, I think the Mavs in 7. Now, why…

    Westbrook does not play at a very constant high level. Sure, he can do very good. OK, surely Kidd is too old for him and not so fast. But what the Mavs definitely can do is keep him away from shooting from outside. I he drives in the Mavs have a beautiful organisation of zone and man defense. That is what makes their defense so hard. OKC will make its points. But I doubt they will average that high! Durant can be defended by anybody. I dont think he will get any easy shots. Probably from the arc he will shoot against smaller guys. That is the point. Durant is not physically in a shape where he can easily put away smaller, thinner opponents! That is why it is easier to put small guys against him. And sure, OKC’s bench is underestimated, but well, no bench can match properly with the Mavs bench. They are incredibly deep. Double digits are possible for anybody. And Ibaka will have to calm down against Dirk one-foot-fade-away, otherwise he will be in foul trouble after 5 mins. His agressive D is not the best approach to Dirk. Dirk is quite unguardable like Durant and/or Westbrook in a certain shape and sense. But the Mavs deepness will kill OKC. Everyday two or three other guys apart from Dirk will score double digits. That is the point of the mavs. Definitely no more superstars than OKC or any other team, they just have Dirk. but they fit perfetcly well in their roles, and have nearly exclusively above-average players who are far from being stellar, but do their job very very well. And you cant hinder them from doing their job. That is the point!

    Greetz from a Magic-Fan

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      Again, I’m not understanding how any of my stats are faulty. I just think tt’s hillarious that everytime I post a stat, someone has to find a way to say it’s useless. Unlike Mavs fans posting the season series and saying the Mavs will win on experience alone and giving no examples, I post things like… OH…. field goal 5 D…. Blocked shots…. Fast break points…. You know, things that are kinda important and show how hard the Thunder havve been playing.

      When you come at me with a statement like this “Russell Westbrook does not play a very constant high level” I just have to laugh and ask what sport you’re watching? He had a few games where he took more shots than Durant against a Memphis team that had Tony Allen, who, yes, by the stats, defended KD better than anyone in the league this year. So, yeah. You know…. Your guy who was an all star, 2nd team all nba, won a gold medal and has averaged more than 20 all year, he might take a bulk of shots in that situation. Let me ask you a question… Who else do you want taking those shots, other than Westbrook and if you’re an OKC coach? Sure, he took too many. Who else is going to be aggressive and take more, though?

      Saying he doesnt’ play at a high level consistently, thats just an insult and shows that you have an opinion of Russell that the numbers dont bear out. Sorry, guy. If you’re gonna tell me that my stats are ridiculous, I’m gonna have to ask you to back your opinion up with a stat that makes me see otherwise. Not only me, but the coaches who put him on the all star team, the writers who selected him all NBA 2nd team, and Jerry Colangelo for putting him on team USA.

  7. SYDALE says:

    Looking at this series objectively… I believe that Dallas will win because of their experience and they’ve been a little bit more consistent with their defense… and definitely more consistent with their offensive execution…

    Dallas wins 4-2… But, I’ve got the feeling that OKC will take Game 1…

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      Again, you bring up a verry good point and a chink the OKC armor: When they have leads, the offense drifts. It’s not just one guy, either, but it’s the whole team. To me, it’s a matter of OKC speeding the game up and running Dallas out of the gym with their young legs. Especially in Oklahoma City, where we route even the best teams because of the energy. If the games are close, the offensive lull becomes a problem. It’s usualllly not a problem with leads because although it sputters for a minute, the lead has been big enough to maintain.

      with Dallas, slowing the game down and forcing OKC to execute half court offense is critical. I’m just not sure once OKC gets going, that Dallas will be able to stop the train enough. They don’t have enough athletic size besides Chandler to really force OKC out of the paint and will struggle to slow anyone on OKC down in the break.

      I think there is one other point that i’d like to bring up, and thats the fact that Jason Kidd is probably gonna have some foul trouble in this serious dealing with Westbrook..If it were anyone(even Dirk) that I was thinking would be in fould trouble, it would matter a lot less because Kidd is the floor general thats going to have to try and control floor tempo against the ultra athletic, fiery Westbrook.

      I also believe this is an answer as to why the Mavs wont be able to out execute OKC if the tempo is at all fast, and thats because someone is going to have take fouls on Russell in that situation. And since iKidd is the guard on the otherside, I don’t see who else it could be.

  8. KIll Joye says:

    C’mon guys, stop giving the Grizzlies flack! They beat the Spurs, who had three championships in the last decade! And they had the best record in the league till the last games of the reg. season. What the Thunder just beat is a very hardworking club, and both would have had a good chance against the Mavs.

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      Let me fill you in on Mavs fans logic, shall I? It goes seomthing like this….

      Grizzlies win regular season series against top seeded Spurs, beat them in the playoofs and beat the Mavericks on the year 3-1. Mavs play Thunder 3 times and win 2, but all 3 before a trade that totally changed the style the Thunder play, making them both bigger, tougher and more defensive. Mavs lose 1 games to 2 with Denver in tee regular season, OKC wins season series with Denver, including 3 games after the trades that made both Denver and OKC soar into the playoffs, most analysists calling Denver the hottest team going in and calling the lLakers “a wreck” going into the playoffs.

      Still following? So…. OKC beats higherr seaded Denver in just 5, a Denver team that was the hottest going into the playoffs and who beat the Mavs on the season, while Dallas stumbles a bit against the 6 seeded Trailblazers. Mind you, a Trailblazers team that had their best player and 2 big men injured.

      Still with me? Meanwhile, Memphis takes out the number 1 seed Spurs and the Griz have beat the Mavs 3 to 1 on the year, Dallas moves on to play a 2 seeded Lakers thata had lost 6 in a row coming into the playoofs and barely beat a New Orleans team that was Chris Paul and a bunch of D league dudes and is wihtouth their leading scorer, while OKC goes in against the team that just knocked off the 1 seed and handled Dallas with pretty much ease all year.

      Here’s where it gets fun to enjoy Mavs fan logic…..Lakers get swept by Dallas. Somehow, it occured to everyone else on the planet(even Laker players themselves) that the Lakers not only stumbeled into the playoffs, but played absolutely terrible. Not just with injuries to Bynums knee and list of injuries to Kobe Bryant, but reports that Shannon Brown has slept with Pau Gasol’s girlfriend tearing the locker room apart and dividing the team. Not only that, but Lamar Odom being filmed by cameras for a new upcoming show with his Kardashian wife, Ron ARtest starting a tv show and Phil Jackons obviously being done in his lasat year of coaching, and you can see the Lakers weren’t exactly the team we’re used to. As Pau Gasol himself put it ” we definitely let outside foreces get to us. it ws hard”

      But wait! OKC beats not only 2 teams who beat Dallas in the regular season, but one team that knocked off the top seed!

      Here’s where we slip into the Mavs fan, other dimension Twighlight Zone! Despite both Denever and Memphis beating Dallas in the regular season and both playing so much better t han LA going in thast its obvious to everyone except Mavs fans, not only were Portland and LA toughter, but Memphis is “just an 8 seed” and despite OKC winning 2 seies against teams that beat Dallas in regular season, Dallas is the favorite to now somehow knock out an OKC team that everyone but Mavericks fans seems to realize were tougher than LA and Portland, despite Dallas losing to both in the year and OKC making the trade for Perkins that hasx completely made them better and Dallas not even seen this OKC team yet this year.

      To conclude: Mavs lose to 2 teams in the regular season that OKC beats in the playoffs, Mavs beat loswer seed and way less hot team in the first round than OKC had in round 1. OKC beats team that killed Mav during regular seasons in second round while Mavs beat a Lakers team that limped into the playoff. But, Mavs fans use regular season matchup vs Thunder as a valid argument that Dallas will, despite ignoring that OKC beat 2 teams that Dallas lost to in the regular season, quote “kill teh Thunder. It will be a small miracle of the Thudner win”

      Confused by Mavs fans logic? Me too.

      • Kings says:

        I love your they beat you, i beat them, i beat you then logic.
        sure lakers stunk, but mav’s beat them with ease.
        sure they had trouble with portland but they gave up a huge lead which is great wake up call.
        its gonna be close so homecourt may come into play.

      • knowledgeandtruth says:

        The point of me posting that faulty logic?

        There is not point in any of it. Thats why I posted it. It was suppose to be more of smarty pants remark to those that keep posting that Dallas won the regualr season mathup between these 2, not really examples of why I think they will lose/win, etc. There is no logic in even trying to bring regular season into this with these 2 taams.

        More or less, I’m trying to get a few Mavs fans to give Memphis a little well deserved credit, not really post why I think the Thunder will win with all that.

  9. reDIRKulous says:

    go DIRK and the MAVS..

    Remember DAL are 3-1 vs OKC this season.

    Better defense by Dallas + Playoff experiences can win the series.

    DAL in 6. =)

    • reDIRKulous says:

      should be 2-1.. =)

    • Brian says:

      Keep in mind, Dallas has yet to play this OKC line-up. As you can see, the Grizz being 3-1 against OKC in the regular season didn’t amount to a hill of beans in their series.

  10. Antonnnnn says:

    Dirk is to much of a beast aint no one fina guard him NO ONE!

  11. ron says:

    well, before anything else or before saying okc will defeat the mavs well think first who the mavs just beaten? if okc faced lakers, will they win the series? the mavs are counted out before the start of that series but they played superb and silenced all lakers fans everywhere….gasol and odom faded against dirk…which i think lakers will have advantage in forward position…kobe was regarded as the best player now in the nba but mavs figured out how to beat his team….so it means they can also figure out how to stop durant, not even the 2nd best player now in the nba….games are about match up and adjustments…..you cant say they will win because they are younger or older….that stupid…..

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      I have to say something right now…. and I’m saying it not just as a Thunder fan, but as an NBA fan….

      The Memphis Grizzlies beat great teams all year, including winning records against the Mavs, Spurs and Lakers, and I am going to give them their props for absolutely manhandling the top seeded Spurs. Against the top seeded teams in the west Memphis not only held their own all year, but actually, and just the opposite to how Mavs fans are acting, totally kicked the teeth in of top teams.

      It makes me feel so sick that Mavs fans are saying things like “OKC beat an 8 seed, whats impressive about that” and “Memphis 8 seed this, just an 8 seed that”.

      It is an absolute mind bender to me that Mavs fans give no rcredance to OKC beating the Grizzlies, ateam that took out the number 1 seed and dominated the Mavs, Spurs and Lakers in the regular season, but give all the credence in the world to the Mavs for knocking out a Laker team that a blind man could see had gone off the rails by the time the playoffs came around.

      It just goes to show that Mavs fans aren’t really watching or paying attention tto other teams around the league. That, or you folks in Dallas have a completely misunderstanding of if a team is playing geat or not. Based on all the downer comments to Memphis for being an 8 seed and how you all think the Lakers were playing so incredible leading up, and in the playoffs, it’s obvious to me that is one or the other. Not one Mavs fan has really even close to realized how tough the Grizzlies played against great teams all year and how they not only beat, but absolutley took the heart out of the number 1 seed, championship experienced, veteran Spurs.

      Tha fact that OKC beat Memphis, a team that played absolutely great the last few months, and the fact that OKC beat Denver in 5 after Denever rode high into the playoffs as the best team after the all star break, that seems to mean nothing, and it’s your completely offbase comments about Memphis that have showed me why: aside from the Mavs, you Dallas fans just aren’t getting how great other teams are.

      In the case of Memphis, thats just sad…. Even grade school children can see how great Memphis played towards the end of the season and in the playoffs.

  12. HillBillyBob says:

    Dallas Mavericks are on a roll and they look dangerous,like champ caliber dangerous.Everybody is expecting a collapse but I don’t see it. Dirk has been unbelievable and right now nobody is able to guard him, He’s the key to the whole series, if Dallas can force OKC into doubleteams and keep on the great D,they have a chance to make this a quick series. But if Thunder can somehow find a way to play straight up man-to-man on Nowitzki,and with Westbrook running circles around Kidd and Durant lighting it up, this can go on and on, even to game 7
    But still predicting the outcome is pretty easy, I mean c’mon Dallas Mavericks SWEPT KOBE BRYANT!!!!!!!!!!

  13. Cl24 says:

    Dallas in 6. and they will see bulls(Bulls in 6 as well) there in the finals.
    The finals will be fun, Mavs VS Bulls, lmao

  14. V.G. Lante says:

    I like Nowitski and J.Kidd but the arrogance of their fans are making me root for the Thunder.

    1. People/Analysts talked about Denver being a scary team and the best team after the All-Star Break – Thunder
    2. People/Analysts talked about the Grizzlies knocking off the top seed and how great their Big Men are.. – Thunder
    3. People/Analysts are now talking about how Dallas is playing and how they will have no problems with the Thunder…

    Guess what? The Thunder is still around even though everyone has been counting them out since the beginning of the playoffs.

    Yes the Thunder are Young and Inexperienced but,.. when you have HEART, and the Talent to back it up, all of that goes out the door.

    Thunder Fans: Be Proud but remain humble (just like the Thunder), the OKC Thunder have been regarded as the team of the Future,.. Guess What, the Future is Now!

    Maverick Fans: I Love Nowitski and J.Kidd and I do hope they get a Championship before they retire but give the Thunder their due respect just like Zach Randolph said. Stop referring to the Seeding and how OKC had it easier and how they “should” have done better against the Grizzlies. Guess what, the Grizzlies had the Mavericks Number this season too! They are 1-3 against the Grizzlies. Try to avoid being to arrogant and predict sweeps or blowouts like you’re doing here,. you don’t want to be down there with the Laker Fans.. (Honestly, that’s why it is easy to hate them) Not all of them of course.

    Let’s just kick back, relax, enjoy the show that these Final Four Teams are about to show us.

    Since the post is supposed to be about Westbrook, he is honestly the next Jason Kidd. He is a Triple-Double Machine, even more than the league MVP. He just gets more criticism because he is on a team with another Superstar which he is expected to be deferring to most of the time, even though that Superstar encourages him to just play.

    Westbrook, with time, and a desire to improve, has the potential to be the best PG in the League, if he does do / become that, only his mindset and time can tell.

    Finally the Playoffs are Exciting Again!

  15. knowlegeandtruth says:

    Look… I’m going to run this by everyone one more time, just so you can all see how faulty most of yorur arguments are…. You Mavs fans are getting a huge kick and think you’re being smart by downplaying OKC beating Memphis because the Griz were and 8 seed and your’e so quick to give Dallas props for beating the higher seeded Lakers. This logic holds no weight for several reasons:

    You think that experience and a higher number seed matters, do you? Well then, try this:: by your logic, the Mavs are better because they beat hte higher seeded Lakers, right? Well…. The Griz beat the number 1 seed Spurs and OKC beat the team that beat the number 1 seed, so… You see why that makes no sense? By all your logic, it should be Spurs and Lakers in the conference finals, not OKC and Dallas. Why? Because by your logic, the teams with the most experience and higher seeds should win. I love how you say “OKC beat the 8 seed and Dallas beat the Lakers,” when by that logic, Dallas wouldn’t have beat the Lakers at all! I love people who only use certain logic when it applies to their point and not another persons views. Thats called being jaded, folks! For the last time… THE SEEDING AND WHAT NUMBER THE TEAMS WERE GOING INTO THE PLAYOFFS HAS MEANT NOTHING!!!! Does it look like Spurs and Lakers playing for a shot at the title? I don’t think so!

    If you think Dallas beat a team as phsycial as the Grizzlies because they beat the Lakers and Portland, you are just… Not even watching the same sport that some of us are. Why dont you ask the Spurs about Memphis? The 8 seed knocks out the 1 and it means nothing to you Mavs fans because it was just an 8 seed that the Thunder beat, but when Dallas besta the Lakers its somehow a big deal because the Mavs beat a higher seed? Um… What?! Yeah, that makes all tons of sense! Good one, Mavs fans! OKC beat 2 completely different kinds of teams in 2 completely different fashions, and you want to boil it down to what number they are. Like I said, then: OKC beat the team that beat number 1. Why haven’t I used that fact to my advantage? BECAUSE IT DOESNT MATTER! Do I think the Mavs are playing like a 3 seed? No! As a matter of fact, I think the Mavs are playing like a 2 or 1 seed.

    I’m just tired of this obviously faulty logic. You think that the Mavs being more experienced is a huge advantage when in reality, its not that much of an advantage against OKC because OKC have already proven they are ready for the next step. Why do I say that? They took the championship Lakers(not this garbage Laker team in this years playoffs) to 6 last year and beat Memphis, easily the most bruising team in the paint in the playoffs in a triple overtime game in Memphis with that crowd going nuts.

    Yes, Dallas beat the Lakers. If you don’t think that the Griz or Thunder would have beat the Lakers with how LA payed, you’re just too biased for your own good. I was impreseed with how Dallas played against Portland, but Dallas hasn’t really been tested the way OKC has in these playoffs and been put in the tough situations that OKC has and come out on top.

    Like I’ve said, too: OKC is younger; but if you take their age into account on how they’ve played and the poise they’ve shown in these playoffs, you’re making the same mistake as the logic with the seeding numbers. ITS HOW THEY”VE HANDLED WHAT THEY HAVE< NOT NUBERS OF SEEDING AND HOW OLD THEY ARE! Are they playing like a young team right now that looks inexperienced enough to get whooped by the Mavs?

    Lets look at a few numbers that do matter: OKC is the best team left in blocks, field goal % D, overall size( Collison, Mohammed, Ibaka, Perkins, Durant) and fast break points off turnovers(which was held by Memphis, who OKC just beat)

    Now, in the same token as OKC's age not mattering because of how they've handled pressure situations and their playoffs of the past 2 years, and lets look at why Dallas' age does matter… When you're old, you're slower and less athletic. Thats not a complete knock, its just true. Father time exposed the more experienced Spurs, Lakers and Celtics, and tere is no reason to think that it would be any different here.

    Why, though….? You're asking the Mavs to outrebound, out defend and play harder than a team with young legs that is playing like a team twice their age. That doesn't seem like a tall order? The Mavs are really going to get all those "50/50" bals and hustle plays needed to win on a much more athletic team? It's just asking a lot.

    I know everyone wants to pretend that these older teams like the Lakers and Spurs, Celtics and Mavs have a few good years left and that these younger teams aren't ready yet; but if Memphis beating the Spurs, Chicago beating the Celtics have shown anything, it's this obvious point: the changing of the old guard to the young is happening now. Not in a few years, not next year… It's already happened in these playoffs, and will continue to happen. The Thunder taking the Lakers to 6 lastyear should have been the wake up call for that. These aren't the teams of the future… Look at the final 4 here, guys! Westbrook and Durant, Wade and James and Bosh, Rose and Deng and Gibson….Kobe and Fisher and Gasol watching from their coaches, just like Pierce, Garnett and Allen are. The only difference between them and Dallas, is that Dallas hasn't played a "team of the future" yet. They beat an injured Portland team with some good young pieces, but not athletic and still old enough at some positions to lose and they beat a Laker team that played…. Well… Old and slow. These are the teams of now, not the teams of the future. The future is now.

  16. barea fan says:

    I think that the MAVS will win this series because of the experience and because of the great 3 pt shooters like dirk nowitzki,jason terry,jason kidd,j.j barea and peja stojakovic

  17. Mavs will beat the Thunder says:

    It sounds like everytime someone says “knowledge and truth”, or “facts” they are full of crap and opinions. And statistics don’t matter, what matters is how solid the teams are and how experienced they are. The only way the mavs will lose against the thunder is by some miracle. Stop talking crap and being blind, watch the first game and see how well the teams play. Not saying Mavs will win the championship but the Thunder has no chance against the solid defense and offense of the mavs. It more than likely will be over fast, and I will laugh. If anyone has been watching both these teams, and every game of the playoffs so far (as I have) you would realize the Mavs have been way more solid than the thunder has.

    • nada says:

      first game mean nothing. Especially OKC is well known to recover after a loss.The only miracle is when Dallas can beat Grizzies

    • goodgravy says:

      Stats dont matter? All that matters is experience? Thats odd,. seeing as how all the more experinced teams are sitting at home right now while the teams with the best STATS are still playing. Like i sad before, i don’t think ive ever come across less knowledgable basketball fans than mavs fans. Stats dont matter…. What kind of a statement is that? Sounds like a statement made by someone who knows all the stats are in favor of the other team and no other reply but to use logic that has already been proven wrong in these playoffs multiple times. By your account, it should be Spurs vs Lakers and Celtics and Mavs. Why isn’t it? If you want the answer, where you going to look? Thats right! Stats!

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      Lets cross sport this argument…. If a right handed pitcher in baseball is facing a team with all left handed batters and he has an ERA of over 7.00 against said team and you have the option to select a younger, right handed guy with better stats, who are you going to pitch? You going to pitch the veteran lefty with worse stats? Because by ignoring tha stats in favor of experience, thats exactly what choice you’re making.Does that sound like the smart decision?

      How in the world is saying OKC has the most blocks, highest field goal % defense, highest scoring offense and most break points left of anyone playing not the truth??? I don’t even get what you’re saying. My “facts” and “knoledge” aren’t true? Really? Anyone can look these kinds of things up! The difference between me and you is that I’m using the evidence(stats) to prove my point, and all you’re doing is throwing a complete opinion at me! Just…. Unreal, man! It’s yoru opinion that Dallas has played more solid. Is it my opinion that OKC has all those stats? NO! Why? Because it can’t be an opinion, hahahaha. Having the highest rated defensive left isn’t my opinion, guy! It’s a dead solid, statistical fact!

      Wait, wait, wait…. Are you trying to tell me that a great team can have bad stats just because they are more experienced??? I can’t even believe I’m having to type this out!

      I’m sure Boston, Orlando, San Antonio and LA complete agree with you! They didn’t lose to teams that had better stats, did they? No… They lost to team shat had more experience, right? Hahahaha!

      How in the world are you making informed decisions in life without facts? If 10 peopel who happen to be young all die driving down the street and you have a choice to drive down that street, or another street, are you going with your experience to think you’ll live driving down that street? You could find out WHY people have died on the street first. Wait, that would involve facts. So, rather than pick your team based on facts, why don’t you just not find out why and drive down the street and see what happens.

  18. Josh Lee says:

    Dallas in 6

    Dirk will be unstoppable, i mean who honestly can guard him? lakers had better matchups against him odom/artest, but if thunder plays ibaka on dirk, then ibaka will have a huge drop off with blocks when he defends dirk outside of the paint, and thats where thunder’s defense is most dominant in blocking shots at paint. collison is a better post defender than a face up defense. and durant will be bodied up by a bigger taller dirk. the bench in dallas is deeper as well.

    On the defensive side, dallas has more to throw at durant than thunder do to dirk. deshawn, marion, corey brewer all lengthy quick wing players. and westbrook will try to take over the game offensively because he has a mismatch with kidd. which is a good thing, it will be wise to let westbrook try to take all of the shots. it is important to note that tyson chandler is quick with his help defense so once westbrook and durant beats the defender tyson quick and long with his hops will cause a few problems to durant and westrbook. dirk can rest a little more on the defensive side because he doesnt have to worry about ibaka, collison, perkins scoring on the offense in a consistent basis. if dallas ended up with memphis that wouldve been tough on dirk to guard ZBO and Marc. dirk had to guard LaMarcus, and Gasol/Odom so a ibaka collison matchup on defense is a good sign!

    overall it should be fun too watch old vs young and who will prevail, good luck to both teams, and i hope that the true best team wins. we will see how it all ends up!

  19. Dan says:

    More importantly, who let Mr Westbrook think that short-sleeved collared shirts are acceptable attire? Probably got some pleat-front pants going there too. Please remedy :)

  20. Freddy Brown says:

    I went fishing baracudas in Redondo Beach this morning and saw Kobe and friends. He said too bad Dirk can not join them until next week.

  21. Sp says:

    If Dallas win this series, they are going to need to do it by shutting KD down. Westbrook might score 40 every game, but it will take him 55 shots a game to do it. KD misses a lot less than Westrbook.

  22. Ryan says:

    Just made a new NBA blog at http://nbainsightsandthoughts.blogspot.com/. Check it out. And the thunder r goin to lose

  23. Sigh says:

    It doesn’t matter if OKC played Denver and Memphis or if Dallas played Portland and LA. Seeds do NOT matter in the playoffs. The Lakers weren’t playing like their usual selves, so saying “Dallas beat the Lakers” really isn’t helping your case, the Lakers sucked. However, to be able to shut down Bynum and Gasol is worth a mention. Also, Denver and Dallas are two different teams; they shouldn’t be compared at ALL.

    Memphis played like a top-4 team against OKC, you can’t take anything away from the Grizz. But I believe Dallas is a much smarter and better-equipped team than Memphis was. It really just depends on who wants to win more. This is a series that can’t be determined by stats and previous games

    That said, whichever team wins will win in 6 or 7, not 5 or 4

  24. deron says:

    It’s not the Thunder’s time yet. I think the Mavs will win in 5 or 6. Recent history suggests that if a team is older and the higher seed, they win the series, and the age difference between the Mavs and Thunder is almost 8 and a half years. That being said, I’m rooting for the Thunder, but I wouldn’t mind seeing J-Kidd top off his career with a ring.

    http://theresastatforthat.blogspot.com/2011/05/youth-vs-experience-in-nba-playoffs-who.html

    • Sigh says:

      If “recent history” had any significance in the 2011 playoffs, it’d be the Spurs v.s the Mavs right now

  25. Matt says:

    It all depends on which Russell westbrook shows up because regardless of what he does he is going to get criticized and if he doesn’t score into the mid-20 or low 30s and if Harden doesn’t score high the thunder will lose. The thunder don’t have an answer for dirk no one does at this moment. Z-Bo got stopped because Rudy Gay was out injured had he been on the court we may or may not have seen a different series. The truth is if Westbrook goes to be a Jason Kidd the Thunder will lose. He’s a combo guard not a point guard like steve nash so if he doesn’t score and make things easier which if he had 24 10 and 14 would have looked better then don’t expect a lot out of the Thunder. No one man can beat a team the Mavs proved that against portland and the lakers ( and I’m the big laker kobe fan); regardless of the lockeroom situation the Mavs have a deep bench consisting of Corey Brewer, Peja, Jason Terry: he’s not the Jet yet, jj barea, and Brendon Haywood and that doesn’t include the other guys who can come off the Bench. The thunder need to have 80-90 points from there big three constisting of Westbrook, Durant, and Harden; and with the media I see Westbrook will be going through the motions and completely taken out of the series. Hope I’m wrong but I don’t see him making any impact.

  26. Zac says:

    No Mav can stay in front of westbrook?
    unfortunately, he won’t get easy layups because chandler is down there!
    Mavs couldn’t stay in front of ROY, they couldn’t stay in front of KOBE.
    But Dallas learnt from G4vs Portland and they are 6-0 since!

    OKC played #5 seed and #8 seed, Dallas #6 and #2…. so OKCs opponents stats are supposed to be better!
    Yet, dallas is 8-2 and OKC 8-4 …

    Dallas and Denver have a similiar offense? no… no Dirk, no Dallas offense!
    Dirk took only 11 shots (made 7) and 2 freebies in Game 4 vs. Lakers, yet his +/- was +37 in just 31 minutes.

    and come on, even charles barkley said Dallas wins, and the chuckster is always right…

    OKC is worn-out and will have only 1 day rest before every game. Dallas has rested its legs and studied OKC.
    OKC gave away 3 games to Memphis so they have flaws to exploit.
    Even the ZEN-Master couldn’t find a way to stop Dallas offense or to break it’s Defense.

    Dallas will probably beat the hell out of OKC. Every OKC player needs more time to develop. Dallas in 4.

    • OKCKD35 says:

      yet another retarded dallas fan calling sweep

      • Brian says:

        And yet another moron who thinks seeding actually means something in this year’s playoffs. If seeding meant anything in the West, why are both the #1 AND #2 seeds gone? Did the Mavs beat the #1 team? No? Oh, that was the Grizzlies. Wait! Didn’t OKC beat the Grizzlies? They sure did. Dallas beat a #2 seed, but OKC beat the team that beat the #1 seed. How exactly is Dallas going to sweep this?

  27. carter71185 says:

    mavs vs thunder is toss up which means anybody can win this series

  28. J says:

    okc vs chicago in the finals would be the best thing ever

  29. RJNBA2k11 says:

    Mavs in 4 or 5, just all around better team.

  30. MFFLbro says:

    both griz and thunder looked weak and without any rest thunder WILL BE DESTROYED, bank on it

    • V.G. Lante says:

      Sperm Bank?

      Seriously? Do you know what the record is between the Mavericks and the Grizzlies? Grizzlies 3, Mavericks 1. Why do fanboys need to be so illogical?

      I like Nowitzki, but I hope the Thunder Win just because of this comment. The Thunder beat a Denver Team that EVERYONE was saying was the best team since the All-Star Break. Then the Thunder beat a Grizzlies Team that has been beating good teams all season, and killed the Top Seed in the West. Everybody just keeps saying one thing, they lack EXPERIENCE.

      THE TIME FOR THE EXPERIENCE IS NOW.

  31. Steve says:

    the mavericks is the best team if you talk about playing toghether: no one can guard dirk and if he’s doubled he will trigger the bunch of mavs 3 point shooter.
    but the westbrook matchup will be a nightmare for coach carlie: barea is too weak and kidd too slow.
    and if durant crashed battier an t.allen i wonder what he will do against marion and stojakovic!
    so i think the key for the series will be the help defense by chandler expecially in closing westbrook penetrations.
    for me we are going to have another game7

  32. Russell Westbrook takes a lot of heat for being too aggressive. But let’s face it the Oklahoma City Thunder only have three major scorers Westbrook, Durant, and Harden. If Westbrook is not aggressive the Thunder have no chance to win.

    • Ex-Sonic says:

      Westbrook is selffish somtime but if he plays smart games OKC will win for sure

    • Brian says:

      Agreed. I think Westbrook’s aggression was a big reason why they advanced to the WCF.

  33. playoffsbby says:

    people are dumb mavs can guard westbrooks just look at previous games against him he only puts up like 14 points?when he averages over twenty for teh season im pretty sure thats being able to guard him??And people talking about dallas about lakers just being off no if lakers faced another team it would be a completly dif story mavs were just on fire during the series breaking and tieing many records.Did people forget that the lakers were basically as good this year as last seson wise.And okc they had one of the easiest schedules .Denver and grizzlies i cant believe u got bye them.I for sure thought one of those teams was going to win the series,not.Mavs had play Portland who atm was one of the most feared teams to play in the playoffs.Which everyone thought they beat the mavs.Than the mavs played lakers next .They swept them when people thought they didnt stand a chance.Dirk and durant will basically match up so that takes them two players being a factor.Mavs bench and thunder bench are basically even talent wise but not scoring wise mavs are more dept than them.Mavs will take it ,idc how u see it .Its usually he mavs defense thats hurts them but there back on track not allowing lakers score hundred points in series..

    • OKCKD35 says:

      How was portalnd more feared than denver? Denver actually stated they would much rather play dallas than okc by the way, since the all-star break Denver, yes denver, not portland had the 3rd best record in the league, behind chicago and OKC! as for the 100 points a game we will break that as we average 105 a game (also the highest scoring team in the playoffs)

  34. gutix says:

    I think those aren’t facts but questions :D Numbers can be seen different by whoevers who reads them. You got those numbers playing vs the #8 seed, of course the grizzlies are a lot hungrier than the lakers but that doesn’t mean they are a better team. OKC defeated the nuggets who have a lot in common with the lakers this playoffs, still got the win after obvius help by the refs in game one, Dallas had problems with a good blazers team but they looked a lot better.

    The grizz are a good team but it shouldn’t have taken a much better OKC team to 7 games, that gives Dallas the edge. OKC is far more athletic, got 2 of the berst 3 players in the series, good defense (numbers are a result of a troubled Denver team and the 8° seed). I think OKC has the opportunity to graduate in this playoffs, I don’t see them mentally prepared yet. Let’s see how they handle pressure.
    Gutix

    • OKCKD35 says:

      its funny how everyone brings up the goal tend call too, what was that worth 2 points? didnt we win by more than 2? i thought so, everyone also says OKC gets all ofthe calls yet if you take time and actually check the numbers you will see that in both of the series OKC had more fouls called against them and both other teams had more FT attempts in each series. a ref is a part of the game, no excuses!

    • Brian says:

      Also the fact that the goaltend call was made up in Game 4 by the no-tech when Perkins got thrown to the floor. Or Game 7, when Gasol delivers a forearm shot for no call, but when Ibaka reacts to a bad call in Game 5, he’s slapped with a T. OKC didn’t beat Memphis because of the refs. They won in spite of them.

  35. Renato says:

    Look,OKC is a very good team and athletic.They will have physical advantage against the Mavs.Westbrook is going to outscore Kidd in every game.But if the Mavericks bench play as good as they played against the Lakers,I believe they´ll win this series.Perkins and Ibaka are weak on the offensive end of the floor,Nowitzki is going to score 30 points per game,just as he did in the previous series,because with all due respect,there´s no way to stop his mid-range game or three pointers.Kidd is a very consistent point guard,who knows how to distribute the ball in a better way than Westbrook.James Harden is going to be a factor for OKC,but we must remember that Dallas has the answer in Jason Terry.And despite the terrible way the Lakers were playing when the Mavericks swept them,they are the better team when compared to the Grizzlies.Mavericks in six games.

    • knowlegeandtruth says:

      What sport do you watch? The Lakers were playing better than Memphis going into and in the playoffs? Really? Because absolutely nothing about that statement is remotely true. Dallas lost 2 out of 3 gaames against Memphis in the regular season there, guy. Again…. Hahaha. I just can’t believe that people are thinking that the Lakers were playing even decent and that the Griz should be downgraded for being an 8 seed. It blows my mind….

      Lets see…. Lakers lose 6 in a row going into the playoffs, beat a 6th seed in New Orleans that was missing their all star forward and playing with Chris Paul and a bunch of no names and struggled a lot in that series, and you think the Lakers were playing better than the Grizzlies, even though the Grizzlies knocked off the 1 seeded Spurs? Really??? I mean, seriously now… Really? If Mavs fans would bother to take the number 8 away from the Grizzlies seed and judge them on HOW THEY ACTUALLY PLAYED, this could actually be a conversation.

  36. Katzy K. says:

    seems like the mavs should be able to kick okc pretty easily.

    Durant doesn’t post up there for he can be stopped or at least slowed down.

    Dirk can’t be stopped.

    OKC’s bench has harden. DAL bench chalked full of options AND diverse options.

    DAL runs offense. OKC often keeps the ball above the 3 point line until theres 9 sec on the shot clock.

    Perkins is incredibly overrated Chandler matches him/eats him alive.

    OKC’s advantage is westbrook and he’s not good enough to win the series. MAVS 6.

    • knowlegeandtruth says:

      Durant doesn’t post up, no. But he cuts to the basket and has a huge size and speed advantage on anyone trying to keep up with him thats guarding and his size. Both Dirk and Durant are outside big guys.

      You actually did make a good points here, though and unlike other Mavs fans who somehow dont see that just because the Griz were an 8 seed, it meant nothing that the Thunder beat them and act like the Mavs really did something grand by beating a higher seeded Lakers who played like a non playoff team. The Spurs in their glorious number 1 seed got whooped by the ultra pounding Grizzlies and the Thunder beat the team that beat the 1 seed. I’m not getting why this hasn’t dawned on anyone, but with the arguemtns on here, i’m not expecting to.

      You make a HUGE solid point in this fact:: The Thunder do get out of running offense for portions of games and rely too much on Russ and Kevin on isolation plays from the outside. That is a very solid point, and I commend you for it.

    • nada says:

      Dirt usually get 20+ point. Without post up Durant get 30+ points. If Durant start to post up he will get 50+ point per game. That’s too much for Dallas…..It doesn’t take 5 or 6 guys to cover Dirt. IBlocka alone will do the job……Sorry Mav. Next week you can joint Kobe fishing mackerels….

    • OKCKD35 says:

      its also funny how all the mavs say Durant can be stopped but Dirk cant, then why does Durant score more than Dirk? Why does Durant lead the NBA in scoring, why does Durant lead the playoffs in scoring, oh thats right because he can be stopped, he only score 41 and 39 in their 2 closeout games in the playoffs, he is so easy to stop, should be a cakewalk for Dallas

  37. steven locs says:

    bulls vs mavs finals ..bulls in6 team basket ball wins games n these 2 teams play tha way.miami will win a championship when they get a better bench and learn how to share the damn ball instead of 3 players scoring all the dam points

  38. steven locs says:

    thunder can not sweep mavs they barely got past grizzleys mavs in 6.

    • V.G. Lante says:

      FYI:

      the Mavs only won 1 out of 4 meetings with the Grizzlies during the Regular Season and based on the Grizzlies Play in the Playoffs (knocking off the top seed), the Mavs wouldn’t have had an easy time with the Grizz either.

  39. True2dagame says:

    Knowledge and Truth??? You have neither knowledge nor truth about the game. Dallas beet the Laker thats the truth. You have no knowledge of what was going on in their heads besides we are frustrated by the offense and the defense that the Mavs are playing. This is a team game and the Mavs will play man and zone against the Thunder…the same defense that they played against the Lakers. You would know that if you watched the game. I’m willing to bet you are a lakers fan and you are on the verge of getting a flagrant foul. You are posting Fact: and putting questions beside them. What are you talking about?

    • knowlegeandtruth says:

      No, you have no logic. Why? Like I’ve stated a million times, you people with your “experince” and “but dog lol da lakeas was da champs and dallas beat them, lolololol haha”.

      Is there any 2 more experienced teams and players in this years playoffs than Kobe and Dumcan????? Where are they???!!! Oh yes… At home, watching!!!!!!!!!!!!! Why is is so hard to see that the seeding has absolutely no say here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Why isn’t it Lakers and Spurs playing then, smart people????!!!!! By all your logic, Dallas wouldn’t have beat the Lakers! If you think the Griz played like an 8 seed and were suppose to lose becaue of a number and that has some kind of say on the Thunder beating them because they were an 8 seed, you’re just not knowing at all! Like I said, ask the experienced, multie title winning Spurs if the Memphis played like an 8 seed! So faulty! God, I love this logic! You only use it to apply to the Mavericks, without looking at how your logic has already been proven flase by your own team against the Lakers! Are you guys really that ignornat??????

    • OKCKD35 says:

      WE ARE NOT THE LAKERS, WHAT PART OF THIS DOES NO DALLAS FANS UNDERSTAND. IDIOTS, WELL THAT MEANS WE WILL WIN CUZ OUR FIRST ROUND WAS A HIGHER SEED, THATS IT WE WILL WIN EVERY GAME FOR THE REST OF OUR LIVES BE CAUSE WE BEAT DENVER AND THEY WERE A HIGHER SEED THAN PORTLAND, SO THATS IT, MAVS HAVE NO CHANCE WE BEAT THE NUGGETS, THATS HOW YOU IDIOTS SOUND

  40. mavs 2010-2011 champ says:

    @Knowledgeandtruth, you answer your own factoids.. you know what will happen to your team..

    • knowlegeandtruth says:

      Are the Thunder younger? Are the Thunder better on D by all the stats? Are the Thunder more athletic? Do you really think Dallas has played a team with as much brute force as the Griz and came out on top? Do you really want to ask the super experienced Spurs if they think that the Griz being an 8 seed meant anything? Are the Thunder bigger? Did the Thunder play the Mavs with Perkins? Again, you want to answer all those questions and then tell me how you think the Mavs are going to win?

  41. Stevo says:

    Hate to break it to Thunder fans, but if it took 7 games to handle the 8th seeded grizzles then they have a 1% chance to beat the mavs. Z bo terrorised your defense and big men all series long. News flash….. Dirk is going to go absolutely bonkers on OKC. The great thing about Dirk is that you can throw 5 or 6 guys at him everynight, but his skill set will dominate any Thunder player one on one. You will have to double team him. This is where the Mavericks differ from the Grizzlies. We have knock down shooters. Pick your poison OKC. You left Mike Connally, Tony Allen, Vasquez, and Sam Young open the whole series. You can’t do that with the Mavs. Ball dont lie and it wont lie.

    Quick question for OKC hardcore fans. Who does Kevin Durant average career lowest points against? Why its the Dallas Mavericks. Durant averages almost 10 points less against the mavs in his career.

    Mavs have the best bench in the L. This will wear down OKC eventually. We roll 10 deep and are a very balenced team. At best OKC plays 8, with Maynor’s minutes getting cut even more this series. 10 days of rest for Dallas and a tough fought 7 game series for OKC. Oh and by the way have you seen the Schedule? NBA does not like you guys. One game every otherday for the rest of the series. Even young legs wear down!!!

    Rick Carlise will out coach Brooks. Just like he out coached zen master Phil. He will utilize his players to force OKC to have to adjust to the match ups. Leaving Peja in the game 3 to stretch the floor and force the ball out of Kobes hands was brilliant. Youwill have to play our game. We will not double Durant and Westbrook can shoot all day long. We do not mind.

    We also have home court and have the best road record in the L. Just in case you think your rockus crowd will make a difference. It wont. The Mavs are too eperienced and too Savy to let this one get away. Sorry Thunder maybe next year..

    • V.G. Lante says:

      Look at it objectively, the Mavs haven’t had that much success against the Grizzlies either, they are 1-3 against the Grizzlies this season, so don’t underestimate them just because your team didn’t face them. The Grizzlies also beat up on the top seed in the west. The Thunder beat them, if anything Dallas should thank them for getting rid of the team who has their number. But again, you never know what is going to happen.

      This season and these playoffs are different animals, admit it.

      If there is anything we have learned in these playoffs, it is ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE, ANY OF THESE 4 TEAMS CAN WIN IT ALL.

      • knowlegeandtruth says:

        I’m just going to copy and paste my argeument from above, since your “seeding” and “experince” logic obviously held true the uber experienced in the playoffs Lakesr and Spurs: fact: you’re have no logic!!!!!!!!!!

        How hard is it for you guys to understand this simple point: by all your logic, experience and the seeding numbers, the Griz wouldn’t have beat the Spurs and the Mavs wouldn’t have beat the Lakers!!! It s that flipping hard to see!!! Why don’t you ask multiple MVP winner and greatest champion at the power forrward position ever, who has more experience than anyone, why he lost to the 8 seed Griz?????? Clue train! Last stop, Dallas fans! It didn’t matter because the Griz weren’t playing like an 8 seed and were younger and more athletic!!!!!!!! Is it really that hard???? Man… Why isn’t it Lakers and Spurs in the conference finals then, since as you all suggest, it all boils down to experience and seeding?????? Did you guys not see that the Mavs could have been the 2 or 4 spot in the west on the last days????? Good lord, man! The seeding numbers really meant nothing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • OKCKD35 says:

      Carlisle wasnt good enough to coach OKC, thats why we fired him! If the grizzlies terrorized us so bad why did we advance, why did we beat the # 1 points in the paint team in the Grizz? How did we beat them? with points in the paint, its funny how disrespectful Dallas fans are to OKC, if there was no chance how are we in the western conference finals? I didnt know any year other than this year was relevant, cuz this year KD went 12-20 for 32 points, 10-21 for 28 points and 11-22 for 28 points, what stat you should really look at is your two wins were with Caron butler, all 3 games were close, and we are a better team now with Perk and Ibaka starting rather than Krstic and Green.

  42. knowledgeandtruth says:

    And yeah, Tom. You make maybe the largest 3 points about this series that people just want to ignore:
    1. Having nobody to stay in front of Westbrook isn’t just trouble for Kidd. It makes the entire Mavericks D scramble and have to pick him up in the paint leaving players like Durant open. People don’t seem to realize how good Harden is or the fact that Ibaka has become deadly with his outside shot and the fact that Collison and Mohammed can both step out as big men and hit.
    2. The entire Thunder bench is completely undervalued. These guys have played great on both ends and played extremely well together and are almost a cohesive extension of the Thunder starting 5.
    and finally(and maybe most important)
    3. Chandler is absolutely no offense threat. Why does this matter? Because Perkins and Ibaka are both not just good paint defenders, but incredible paint defenders. Switching Ibaka over to his natural power forward position and not having to worry about Chandler as a scoring threat and having Perk in the paint as the center gives Ibaka all the freedom in the world to help on drives to the lane and help on Dirk.
    The only player I’m worrying about driving on Dallas is Barea, and I’m not worried about that at all in this series. Why? Because somehow… Someway… Dallas fan thinks that Barea driving into the lane on a statue named Fisher in the Lakers series and a slow old guard in Miller in the Portland series makes them think he’s going to do the same to OKC with Westbrook, even though Westbrook may be the most athletic guard in the league and Maynor is a good defender with only 2nd year young legs and Dallas not having to guard Chandler as a scoring threat and being able to clog paint and help if they need to. I just don’t see with all of these obvious advantages OKC has, how everyone thinks Dallas is going to march through… Until I get a solid rebutle from one single person on these matchup problems Dallas has with OKC, I’m not even going to hesitate to say OKC in 6, maybe a sweep or 5.

  43. knowledgeandtruth says:

    Biased comments? I stated a bunch of pure facts and your rebutle(much like Mavs) was soft! Oh yeah, and using the regular season matchup as a gauge for these 2 teams is absolutely futile. Perkins changes the whole dynamic of the Thunder, and he played in absolutely none of those games. If you can’t see that OKC is playing 10 times better than they were in the regular season and with Perkins, you’re just trying to ignore that fact as a Dallas fan because you’re scared.
    Fact: who is going to stay infront of Westbrook?
    Fact: Did OKC not just play a more bruising team than Dallas and win?
    Fact: Did OKC not dispatch of an absolutely similar offense team as Dallas(Denver) in 5?
    Fact: Who has more size?
    Fact: Who is younger and more athletic?
    Fact: Who has the better D in the playoffs by the numbers? (blocked shots, % D)
    Fact: Who has been more battle tested in these playoffs?
    How are any of these facts bias? They can’t be bias, because they are just the flat out truth.

    • Stevo says:

      1. we dont have to stay infront of him…… we can back off him. he can shoot all he wants.
      2. Contrats on beating the 8 seed. Did we just not beat the most bruising team in the L?
      3. We are not similar to Denver. We play Defense you idiot and we move the ball and shoot a lot better.
      4. Mavs have more size. and deeper.
      5. Got me there. But last i checked this isnt a jumping contest. spurs and celtics have won a lot of titles last decade and they werent that athletic.
      6. OMG you fool. just held blazers and lakers to combined 86 points a game. We have hands down best second half defense. Crunch time. when it matters.
      7. Who cares ? who has had more experience in the last decade. Dirk has more playoff games then OKC combined.
      Since when is being through a 7 game battle with a team that over achieved a good thing? we had 10 days of rest.

      • Ex-Sonic says:

        Talk about size. Was Tyson Chandler traded to OKC and fail the physical exame. Poor guy! Now he have to defend Ibaka and the Hulk

      • knowlegeandtruth says:

        Oh, alright. Russell is just going to sit outside and shoot and not realize he can blow by kid and make the bigs have to halp. He will go the whole seriies without knowing that and just shoot outside shots and him, his coach, his teamates and everyone on the Thunder oganization will not realize it. .

        And for the last time… Your seeding and experienec argument…. Has been proven wrong… by your own team! Yes! Oh man! Yep! Wow! It seems to matter that Dallas beat the 2 sseed and has more experience, doesn’t it? Thats great! Why then, oh wise Mavs fans, did the 8 seed beat the 1, despite Memphis having way less experience than Spurss, a 4 time champion with a multiple MVP and one of the greatest coaches ever, why, oh why Mavs fans, did the Spurs lose??? Huh??? Here comse the easy and obvious answer: It didn’t matter what seed they were because they played more physical and were younger and more athletic than the Spurs and could outlast them in games and get all the “50/50″ balls and hustle plays!

        but wiat!!!! Hold on…. The Lakers were the 2 seed, right? Lets see…. The Mavs were the lower seed at 4…. Wait…. The Mavs beat the higher seed… Hold on…. Something is coming to me…. Something even a 3rd grader would understand that Mavs fans have not yet for some reason…. Wait…. The Lakers played even older and slower than the lower seeded Mavs and lost! Wow! Hold up, “playas”. You mean to tell me that whe it comes to the Mavs beating the number 2 seed, it matters, but when it comes to the Thunder beating the Griz team who beat the 1 team, it doesn’t matter at all?

        Wow! I love this logic! It makes perfect sense! Lets see hear….. Boston was more experienced, a champion and old, but lost to a younger and more athletic team, the Spurs are more than experienced, but lost to a younger and more athletic team, and the Lakers were back to back champs and mroe experienced than maybe anyone, but lost to a lower seeded and less experienced team…. Yeah! This makes perfect sense, right compadres???? OH wait!!!! All the most verteran, title winning and experienced teams are out! Oh yeah! Huh… You mean, by all your wisdom, it’s not Lakers and Spurs in the west finals, and Celtics vs Magic in the east? What!?

        Has my point been made yet?????????????????????????/

        Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka, Derrick Rose, Luol Deng, Joakim Noah, Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh… These are the players that are left.. I don’t seem to see Kobe Bryant, Derek Fisher, Pau Gasol, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobli, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen and Shaquille O”neal on any starting 5 left…. Funny…… All thsee much more experienced, veteran, former MVP’s, title winners and starting lineups with an average older age, some having higher seeding, I don’t seem to see any of these names left….

        I do see Jason Kidd, Dirk Nowitski and Jason Terry left. I also see that they played a very old and slow looking Lakers team with a lot of the afformentioned players now sitting at home because of the less experienced and lower seeded Mavs, who shouldn’t have won by all your logic, but did anyway because the Lakers were old and slow. I also see that the Mavs beat a Portland team that had a very experienced, but old and slow point guard (Miller) with Brandon Roy and others being injured and Portland(now that Pop in San Anton sped the offense up this year) playing at the sloest tempo and halfcourt offense of anyone in the playoffs, not really testing the old legs of the Mavs much and playing a style that caters to the Dallas defense.

        Thats not to take away totally from what Dallas has done, though. The Mavs should have beat an injured and slow Portland team and a tank empty, slow and disgrunteled, aging Laker team.

        OKC just beat an athletic, outside shooting deep Denver team in 5, then went and won against the team that took out the 1 seed in a tough, ultra phsyical and crazy environment in Memphis, one triple overtime on the road(which they won) and killed them with speed at home, and you all want to talk about how Dallas has somehow played better and done mroe merited things and been tested as much in these playoffs?

        I guess Miami vs Boston and Memphis vs San Antonio and a younger Chicago team getting to the finals means nothing, eh?

        Wait… I forgot. Dallas beat the 2 seed and the 6 seed, despite overwhelming circumstances being in their favor in both series and winning both relatively easy wihtout being tested by an overtly athletic young team, so that makes Dallas the overwhelming favorite. Yes, I see clearly now.

        I’m not saying Dallas can’t win this series, because they can. I’m just saying that all your experience and seeding talk is garbage and that the young teams and stars are taking over now. They aren’t taking over next year, in 2 years or 3…. If you don’t see that its’ now, you’re ignoring who’s left.

    • Brian says:

      It’s as you said, some Dallas fans are scared to look at the facts. It certainly won’t be the cakewalk for Dallas that the L.A. series was.

    • NBAFAN says:

      I’m sorry but since when does Denver have a 7 footer who can shoot 3 pointers, post -up, dribble around like a point guard, and constantly draw double teams?
      I see what you are saying with the outside shooting but when it comes to Dallas, Dirk is a game changer. There is no one quite like him in this league and thus he is a major factor which can lead to the success or failure of the Mavericks.
      In addition, referring to the battle tested factor, I agree but disagree :) I mean it is true that a 7 game series makes a team stronger,wiser and more experienced; nevertheless, sweeping out the champs is quite an enormous confidence boost. Players who got on a hot streak in this series are likely to carry this energy to the next one…so that should compete well with the factor of – battle tested.

      Anyways this may sound funny but I really hope the other facts you pointed out plus the scoring of Durant would do the job and send Dallas home (I’m a Lakers fan….).
      I just pointed out this other fact to give a better picture of the match-up between these two teams…

      • OKCKD35 says:

        I’m sorry but OKC also has a big man that can put it on the floor, dribble penetrate and shoot 3’s not to mention that guy also has leadthe NBA in scoring the last 2 years, as unguardable as Dirk is, so is Kevin Durant. and i seriously doubt we will be sending the double, we have plaenty of size on our roster IE (Ibaka, perk, collison, mohammed, even aldrich if we get really bad into foul trouble. If you noticed at all did we ever double team Randolph or Gasol? Werent the Grizz the number one team in the lague for points in the paint? OKC just beat them at their own game without double teaming, you also said you have numerous people that would draw a double team, can you please name a second player as i dont see it, not kidd, not terry, not chandler, not marion, noone else on Dallas would warrant a double team

    • msmtih says:

      what are you saying? Of course you can take your own angles of the game and make sound like it’s pretty simple. OKC in 4 right? I think you just talking from the standpoint of a fan. I can go on and on about things that dallas has done better. part of your is your own opinion like dallas has a similar offense than Denver. A lot of offenses are similar. They are all trying to score the basketball. Right?

    • JKey says:

      More like questions that actual facts, on a technicality. You don’t state facts with questions.

      Who is younger and more athletic? So? Older players bring more experience to the table. Sure they may be slower and not have the same stamina and endurance as the younger players, but don’t forget this is also a battle of the mind.

      Now I’m not a fan of either team, but I am having trouble predicting who will win. There are so many good matchups and the bench for both teams are solid enough that it will be a close series. It would be nice to see the Mavs progress further since previously they have struggled with getting past round 1, but I’d also like to see OKC get there because they are an exciting team with a good future.

      As for Westbrook, he will be a handful, but you have to realise there are other players on the team. It should be about team play, not individuals.

      • OKCKD35 says:

        /how many rings are on the MAVS? i know we got 2 players with rings, isnt that playoffs exeperience, not to mention our head coach has 2 rings, he knows what it takes in the playoffs, at this stage with only 2 teams in the west experience is all but out the window, the mavs have made the finals once in the last decade? so that means for this situation they have one series more experience :)

    • Mavs fan 4` says:

      its funny how you said perkins was in none of those games thats true but why did the mavs sweap the season series vs the celtics??
      its also funny how your calling the MAVS soft havent you seen Durant he’s the weakest power foward ive ever seen play the game.
      The MAVS will shut down westbrook and durant just like they shut down kobe and dynum!!

      • Mavs fan 41 says:

        *bynum

      • Ex-Sonic says:

        YOur weakest power forward took USA team to gold medal. A medal that other super stars can even touch!!!!! and he’s the scoring champ for 2 years in a roll…

      • OKCKD35 says:

        lol you are one cocky guy there buddy, who cares of the mavs swept the celtics, who cares about the regular season, we are in the conference finals and this OKC team you have not gone up against yet this year, i am not saying OKC is going to sweep (like most of the mavs fans in here are calling for dallas) i am saying that this will be a good series, i will see you in here tomorrow to talk about how easy of a win it was for dallas :)

    • Juice says:

      Fact: Dallas beat the 2 seed who were also the defending champions.
      Fact: OKC beat Denver, a team with no superstar and no leader.
      Fact: OKC went 7 games with the 8TH SEED. Thats not impressive.
      Fact: Blocked shots are not the only defensive stat that matters (Ibaka is a great shot blocker tho)
      Fact: The Mavs have already proven that they are a better defensive team this post season.

      Just think about it. How many losses do the Mavs have this postseason?? How many losses do the the Thunder have??

      The Mavs beat the Blazers and the Lakers, which are both better teams than the Nuggets and the Grizz.

      • Ex-Sonic says:

        Fact:

        Before playoff, Laker lost 6 in a roll, even to weak team..This is not the Lakers two year ago

      • knowlegeandtruth says:

        fact: you’re have no logic!!!!!!!!!!

        How hard is it for you guys to understand this simple point: by all your logic, experience and the seeding numbers, the Griz wouldn’t have beat the Spurs and the Mavs wouldn’t have beat the Lakers!!! It s that flipping hard to see!!! Why don’t you ask multiple MVP winner and greatest champion at the power forrward position ever, who has more experience than anyone, why he lost to the 8 seed Griz?????? Clue train! Last stop, Dallas fans! It didn’t matter because the Griz weren’t playing like an 8 seed and were younger and more athletic!!!!!!!! Is it really that hard???? Man… Why isn’t it Lakers and Spurs in the conference finals then, since as you all suggest, it all boils down to experience and seeding?????? Did you guys not see that the Mavs could have been the 2 or 4 spot in the west on the last days????? Good lord, man! The seeding numbers really meant nothing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • goodgravy says:

        Um…. You do realize that Dallas lost 3 out of 4 games to the Grizzlies in the regular aeason, right? “went 7 with an 8 seed thats not impressive”. Are you really trying to make a valid point with that? An 8 seed that beat the number 1 seed and dominated the Lakers, Spurs and Mavericks in the regular season. Do you not realize how close the west was? If Dallas would have lost 1 more game and Oklahoma only won 1 more their seeding woulld have been switched. Mavs fans are probably honestly the most blindly ignorant fans of an NBA team that I’ve ever come across. You tell me whats more impressive here, Juice: beating an 8 seeded that took out the number 1 and beat up the Mavs, Spurs and Lakers in the regular season, or a 3 seed that beat a 2 seed that had the wheels fall off before the playoffs even started and beat a Portland team that was injured? Would you like to just ignore the fact that Denver was the bsst team after the all star break? How about the fact that the Grizzlies played bettr against the top teams in the league than Dallas did? You still going to stick with Portland and Lakers being better than Denver and Memphis? Like I said, Memphis beat the 1 seed, so saying that the Thunder beat an 8 seed is pretty much not even a logical statement.

      • OKCKD35 says:

        juice you are a moron, defensive shot % OKC is leading the playoffs, meaning the teams they play are shooting worse which translates to good defense. i am tired of hearing the mavs beat the lakers and portland, hopefully after this series thats what you will still be saying, well they beat portland and LA lol. yes the Grizz were the 8 seed, they also intentionally rested starters at the end of the year to get the 8 seed (if you watched basketball you would know that) as they felt they could match up against the spurs, and that is the point, its all about matchups in the playoffs, so us beating denver and memphis, and dallas beating LA and Portland has no bearing on this series other than the fact that they are the only two teams left in the west!

  44. Joe says:

    un-dirk-like stellar playoff performance? Go back and look at his past playoff series’. In his career he’s averaged 25 pts and 10 rebounds. He damn near won the 2nd round series against the Nuggets by himself in ’08 averaging nearly 34 and 12 in that series. Check your stats homie.

    OKC is more athletic and younger, but I think the Mavs get the series with gritty defense and experience. Mavs in 6.

  45. Tom says:

    I know the Mavs killed the Lakers I saw two of the games and watched clips of the other two but Oklahoma City is an entirely different monster, and the playoffs is all about match ups. I don’t know I kinda think the Thunder will take it. I feel like everybody is underestimating the Thunder’s bench. And Westbrook will shut down Jason Kidd and Barea when he’s guarding them, and then blow by them on the other end of the court. Actually thinking about it nobody on the Mavs can stay in front of him, which will create even more opportunities on offense. Also nobody on the Mavs can guard Durrant (which even though that’s only one small sentence, it is a HUGE task). Ibaka and Perkins will shut down the paint. Because the Mavs don’t really have an inside threat. and by threat i mean someone who can score whenever they want in the paint(except for Dirk but he can’t really score IN THE PAINT whenever he wants, he can just basically shoot over anyone whenever he wants, they’ll just make him do it from the free throw line and beyond). So the perimeter defenders won’t really have to cheat on the guy their guarding to help stop penetration. So basically I think the Mavs will be shooting a lot of contested jumpers in this series. Sooo unless dirk can drop 45-60 points every game i don’t see the Mavs winning this series. The Mavs will have a hard time stopping Westbrook and Durrant, and i think the thunder will basically let dirk get his 30 points and just clamp down on the rest of the Mavs team. Kinda how the Hawks beat Orlando. I’m not saying it’s going to be that easy but i’m saying thunder in 6.

  46. Grizz says:

    i mean Mario chalmers

  47. Grizz says:

    OKC is to fast for the mavs and their going to put the mavs to rest out of the Heat and Chicago series i don’t know they both got some problems. There’s three allstar vs one the heat got the upper hand in that but the bulls got the upper hand in rebounding and Rose is to fast for mario chambers

    • Rich says:

      OKC can’t figure out a one-dmensional Grizzlies team. Stop Randolph and you stop the Grizzlies. Where was the doube team ? OKC have 2 of the greatest players this season but the homecourt advantage did it for them against that series.

  48. Symokoto says:

    if the thunder can split the first two games in Dallas, then I would give them good odds at winning the series. But Dallas hasn’t lost at home yet, so I think those odds are pretty long. I hope they do it though. I want OKC to face Chicago in the finals.

    • renba says:

      I don’t care about your comments. For me, i just want the Mavs to win this season. First of all kidd is nearly retiring and Dirk is getting old so they NEED to have this title to complete what they have been fighting for and carrying their teams over the past seasons. They really deserve this NBA crown to credit their great talents. Nevermind for bulls and okc or heat because they are young. They still have enough time to win the title because they are good. Best of luck to the Mavs! I know it’s gonna be a tough fight but we are here for the support and prayers for you>>>

  49. Office Blvd says:

    Game one – Blowout, Dallas by 30

    Game two – closer game for 3 quarters, but Mavs by 12

    Game three – Thunder lead game til 4th Quarter, Mavs by 6

    Game four – 3 Thunders get ejected for flagrants, Mavs sweep series, win by record 40 points.

  50. knowledgeandtruth says:

    Like I stated above, I’m just tired of people using this “well, Dallas beat da champs, lol!!! they win Thunder easy!!” argument, because it’s BS! The Lakers were playing like way more of an 8 seed than the Grizzlies were and the Thunder have had to be tried through overtime games and a tough 7 game series against Memphis, while Dallas hasn’t played a real game since Portland. I don’t know how people overlook the fact that nobody on Dallas is going to stay infront of Westbrook and that OKC’s got a great bench. We know OKC is younger, more athletic, bigger, been tested more and already beat an outside shooting team with a deep bench in Denver, and yet… Even though OKC has the number one field goal % D left in the playoffs and leads in blocks and create way more turnovers than Dallas with a younger team to finish on the break and a freak athletic point guard, everyone still seems to somehow see Dallas winning this thing. Complete basketball logic, however, would dictate the complete opposite.

    • Rich says:

      After next Tuesday, you can already change your handle to CluelessandFantasy. I won’t say bias because we are all bias about our respective teams, after all we are all sportsfans.

  51. Dirk Fan says:

    Game one – Blowout, Dallas by 30

    Game two – closer game for 3 quarters, but Mavs by 12

    Game three – Thunder lead game til 4th Quarter, Mavs by 6

    Game four – 3 Thunders get ejected for flagrants, Mavs sweep series, win by record 40 points.

    • Brian says:

      You act like the Thunder are the Lakers, but they are a far cry from them. It certainly won’t be a sweep. Winning two in a row against OKC is no easy task. Just ask Denver or Memphis, who both failed to do so in this year’s playoffs.

    • Ex-Sonic says:

      Game 1: Blow out, Dallas lost by 30
      Game 2: Dallas play better, lost by 12
      Game 3: Dallas play a little better, lost by 6
      Game 4: Dallas surrender, KD and WB rest the last two quarter and get ready for the bull

    • OKCKD35 says:

      blowout by 30 and 40, wow i can make retarded statements too,

      Game one thunder by 95 durant scores 120 points
      game 2 a little close thunder by 60 durant only gets 90 points
      game 3 thunder by 79 points Dirk breaks his leg
      game 4 thunder by 157 sweeeeep!

    • DM8488 says:

      Dirk fan put down the pipe and step away

    • defdun says:

      Wow – how do you know?
      can you also give us the box score and the FG% please

  52. Thunder Roars! says:

    If Nowitzki continues his un-Dirk-like stellar playoff performance, it will be tough for the Thunder. It’s time for Serge Ibaka to really come through!

    • KD35 says:

      Not sure what you mean by un-Dirk-like playoff performance. If it’s meant to be picking on him bc of past years, you should be aware of the fact that he’s one of just 4! players in the history of the league to average more than 25/10 in the playoffs. So people might want to start giving him credit for what he’s done in this league in both regular season and postseason.

  53. knowledgeandtruth says:

    Do you people not realize one simple thing here? Yes, Dallas did beat the Lakers, sure. They beat a totally shell of themselves Los Angeles Lakers, not the championship caliber Lakers. The 8th seed Grizzlies were playing a much more physical and high level game when the Thunder beat them, than LA was when Dallas swept them. If you can’t see that, you just don’t know ball. OKC already dispatched of an outside shooting, 3 point launching team(Denver. In 5, too) and played a bruiser, so OKC can obviously handle both styles and are a ton tougher than the notoriously soft Mavs. I know all the so called experts are picking Dallas, but I just don’t see how thats going to happen. Memphis just sharpened the hell out of the OKC defense and guess what, race fans? The number one field goal % D left in these playoffs isn’t Miami… It isn’t Chicago… It isn’t Dallas… It’s Oklahoma City. Between Ibaka, Perkins, Mohammed, Collision, Thabo and Durant, OKC has plenty of size and different looks to throw at Dirk. Yes, he’s going to score. I just don’t see Chandler handling all that rebounding work against the OKC size. If they can dominate Zach Randolph and Mark Gasol, they’re gonna dominate the boards against a much softer Mavs team.

    Nobody is going to stay in front of Westbrook for Dallas, either. He’s going to blow by Kidd at will and if one of the bigs thats either guarding Durant or Ibaka has to help, that just leaves Durant or Ibaka or Harden or Cook open and if they don’t help, Russell will easily score 2 on Kidd every time.

    I see the defensive advantage going to OKC, the rebounding advantage going to OKC, fast break points and easy buckets going to OKC because of Westbrook, and the obvious size advantage in the paint and block shots going to OKC. The Thunder are younger and way more athletic.

    You people haven’t seen OKC that much, but Harden, Collison, Cook, Mohammed and Maynor have been not just a good bench in these playoffs, but a great bench. Yes, Dallas still has the bench advantage. But the gap is not near as huge as a lot of the pundits are making it.

    I think if Dallas isn’t careful, this could be over in a sweep or 5.

    OKC in 6.

    • hahahaha says:

      nice biased comment coming from an ignorant fan :D
      still calling the mavs soft.. LOL
      just watch whats gonna happen to your OKC..
      not gonna make predictions like most of the biased fans do
      just gonna watch and enjoy this series

    • msmtih says:

      Sounds like your an okc fan. No objectivity. The reality is either team could win because they have both had success so far.

    • Kilgore Trout says:

      To compare Denver to Dallas just because they both play up-tempo offenses is absolutely ridiculous. As promising as the Nuggets looked without a superstar post-All-Star break, they really could have used Melo in their series against OKC. The fact that Dallas has multiple guys that can demand a double team makes this a totally different matchup for the Thunder.

      I’ll give you that OKC’s bench is criminally underrated, but their key strength is defense. What happens when Durant is off the floor and it’s just Westbrook, Sefolosha, Harden, Maynor, and some big bodies?

      Westbrook’s speed is definitely going to give the Mavs’ D fits, but who’s going to stop Dirk? Ibaka? Maybe he can slow him down inside. Durant? No way, Jose. Collison? Just cut it out, buster. Yeah, you guys put a hurting on Z-Bo and the Grizzlies post game, but that’s due in large part to Memphis not having anyone to consistently make outside shots and stretch the D.

      If Dallas’ bench, specifically Jet, Peja, and Barea can play anywhere near as well as they did against the limping Lakers, I think the Mavs will win in 6 or maybe 7. If not, this series could get ugly, quick. I like Durant, Ibaka, and Westbrook a whole lot, but as hesitant as I am to say this for fear of jinxing it, I feel like this is finally the year Kidd, Dirk, Jet, and Peja get the monkey off their backs and win a title.

    • Juice says:

      I should have figured that a post from somebody calling themselves “Knowledgeandtruth” would be nothing but pure ignorance. But anyways…

      After how crazy this playoffs has been, I’m not making ANY more predictions. But it upsets me to hear people call the Mavs soft. The Lakres roster this year is nearly identical to last years roster and they were absolutely destroyed by the Mavs. And the Mavs are a completely different team than they used to be. They have size. They have strength. They have DANGEROUS shooters. They have excellent point guards. They have the DEEPEST bench in the league. And of course, they have Dirk Nowitzki.

      OKC is a good young team, but beating the Nuggets doesnt really prove anything. And the fact of the matter is that they were in the only 7 game series of the playoffs so far and it was against the 8th seed (Nothing against the Grizzlies, just stating facts). The Thunder wouldnt have beat the Lakers had they met. And they would have struggled with Portland.

      In closing, after reading you repeatedly call the Mavs soft, I just think back to game 4 against the Lakers and laugh because, while I’m not a Mavs fan, I do realize that this isnt the same team who has flopped in the playoffs in the past. After watching the playoffs so far, you can call the Spurs soft, You can call the Nuggets team soft. Hell, you can even call the Lakers and Celtics soft. But you CANNOT say the same for Dallas. The Dallas Mavericks are FAR from soft.

      • DM8488 says:

        lakers? yes same names but damn sure not the same team! a team who losy by self inficted in fighting age and in disarry. and no im no laker fan in fact NEVER have been a laker fan. but to say the were same is totally whacked!

      • Rich says:

        They were not the same Lakers as the year before. They were actually better because of the healthy Bynum. But the hard to accept fact is – the MAVS just became even better.

    • goodgravy says:

      You people are insane…
      Look… If your’e all thinking that Dallas beat the Lakers, you’re fooling yourselves. Yse, they were the Lakers in uniform name, sure; but that team is such a FARRRRRRRRR cry from lastyears lakers.
      If you’re saying that Dallas has been tested as much as the Thunder in the playoffs, you’re sorely wrong.
      The fact is, knowledgeandtruth had some great points and you all shot him down with stuff that can easily almost verify his points.
      If you’re going on the regular season series, you’re a fool.If you’re talking about Perkins being on Boston and not beating Dallas, you’re an idiot because OKC is a completely younger, more athletic taem than the old Celtics. Knowledge makes several good points in his argements, including the fact that Memphis were easily a more phsical test than Dallas has had with Portland and the Lakers. And stop giving this “defending champs” blah blah blah. Thats like saying that every defending champ is automatically tough to beat. Think about. How different was that Laker bench? Better on paper than they played all year and in the playoffs. Experience isn’t going to dissguise the fact that Dallas is a lot older and slower and less athletic than OKC. Without Dirk making OUTSIDE shots, what are the Mavs? They are a bunch of guys taking outside shots. Being as the Thunder don’t even have to guard either of the Mavs big guys int the paint, how in the world do you think Dallas is going to get be open for all these outside shots? Like knowledge, I’ll take the Thunder in 6.

      • Rich says:

        Since you were so impressed with OKC and Memphis, would you dare take those 2 against MAVS and LAKERS in a round-robin game ? The odds would be 1 – 1000 !

  54. letski says:

    its a long series but mavs will rule…

  55. KD35 Fan says:

    I always knew that this day would come.. But man I never thought that my OKC would take game 7 to beat Griz.. I mean game 6 was ours but OKC blow it out for some reason but whatever we won the series it doesn’t how long it took.. it was a good series OKC vs Denver and Memphis probably the 2 most exciting match up in these playoffs but anyways.. this will be the first time thunders meets mavs after the trade,, so ya im excited to see this 2 teams go against each other.. and i think it will be a long series.. of course OKC in 6 just cause im a fan :D.. lol but in reality i can’t see my team beating dallas after watching what they did to the 2 time defending champs.. but ya we’ll see how things go tomorrow.. LETS GO THUNDERS!

    • LakersWillWin says:

      Perkins Vs Chandler is going to be a great matchup to watch.

    • Ex-Sonic says:

      OKC will match well against Dallas…Dallas will collapse due to …ages..!!!!!

      • renba says:

        The mavs will dominate the inside. OKC are young but with experienced and talented players the mavs will definitely win in 5!!!

  56. LOLakers says:

    That’s nice but can he do that against the Heat defense? No! Not that it matters since they’re gonna go down to Phallus in 5. It’s gonna be Heat vs Mavs in the finals and the Heat are gonna win in 6!

    • OKCKD35 says:

      @ LOLakers Who cares for your heat opinion on the OKC Dallas blog, you are always in here hating, for the record you should worry about your own team being served a 20 point butt kicking in game 1. How did LaQueen do in that game? Wasnt that dunk all over Wade just magnificent by Taj Gibson? Rose will continue to ball up Wade, and the “team” of the Bulls will give it to the heat anytime your “big 3″ goes to the bench. Taj Gibson will be the X factor, i just want to see the heat cry again, and Wade throw another Pity Party “the world is right, the heat are where everyone wants them, losing games” Get this bg baby a Whamburger and some French Cries, little baby Wade

      • Law064 says:

        @OKCKD35 LMAO the Thunder will be put to test again but this will be a good series.@LOLakers you need help who on Miami can keep KD in check? Lebron will be ok but KD will still score James Jones?? Red Octagon STOP plus the heat are not going to the finals they were smashed yesterday by 21 go cry a river

      • Hardhat Lunchpail says:

        @OKCKD35-
        I have nothing to add to that, that was the perfect response to that troll. Here’s hoping for Bulls vs Thunder in the Finals! If it happens, it’ll be an exciting series.

    • Ex-Sonic says:

      Heat will be dismanteled by The Bull 4-2

  57. Jeff says:

    @Unknown –

    That article explains nothing, it’s simply a prediction based on someone who likes Dallas and who only hears stories of OKC.

    Westbrook felt obligated to be a score-first option because Durant was being guarded by two of the best perimeter defenders in the game and Westbrook was being guarded by the lowly Conley.

    He also succumbs to turnovers easily because that’s the style of play the Thunder utilize, quick and dangerous, high turnovers are a given, but so are fast break pts.

    The guy in your article speaks so lowly of the Thunder bench, he obviously has not been watching them play. Harden has led the league in scoring off the bench since the All-Star Game. But that guy probably didn’t know that. OKC is just as capable of shooting the three as Dallas, and they have many other options as well.

    Dallas has two old guards to throw at Westbrook and Marion to throw at Durant. While Ibaka can hinder Dirk’s inside game, even though he will still have his jumper.

    Dirk’s jumper can’t carry Dallas that far,

    OKC in 6.

    • OKCKD35 says:

      that and didnt the bench outscore the grizzlies starters in game 5? didnt they score 40+ points a few times? i always love analysts opinions, they always seem to be very biased! OKC bench scores when it needs to, what they also fail to mention is they are a fantastic defensive unit with collison, mohammed, maynor on the floor. If they watched any of the OKC series VS either Denver or Memphis they would notice our bench has been out performing our opposition. Dallas is a good team, but so is OKC. seems to me like OKC has been hated on by the analysts in the playoffs, (See first round upset blog) everyone said the nuggets had the best chance at upsetting OKC (see 4-1 series win) Then even against the Grizzlies, everyone had them winning the series after the game 1 win. using OKC as a stat for Memphis beating the spurs, so of course we are the “how are they here team” in the western conference. i am ok with that, the only thing that bothers me is the announcers for the game (i do not know if this is because i live in California) but both series so far the announcers have been terribly biased to both denver and memphis (even during the Thunder home games). I am tired of hearing how great the nuggets and grizzlies are, they are both gone now, so we will be onto how great the MAVs are. Give this team some love ESPN, ABC, and TNT. OKc obviouslt deserves to be where they are at! And for the record i am promoting a new nick name for MR. Nick Collison A.K.A. “Craig” for knocking out Z-Bo. (See the movie Friday)Collison played absolute great defense against a much bigger (weight wise) Randolph, he took all the beating and for the most part shut him down from the field! Go Craig! “he thinks he’s a MAC, he is big Macaroni and cheese!”

      • Juice says:

        The Thunder are a good team, but keep in mind that they beat the Nuggets and the Griz. Nobodys hating, but the Mavericks beat a VERY tough Portland team and SWEPT the Lakers. So it’s not that the Thunder arent getting enough credit. It’s just that Dallas has been more impressive by sweeping the defending champions while OKC went 7 games with the 8th seed. It’s common sense.

      • V.G. Lante says:

        Is Juice saying that the Denver Nuggets and the Grizzlies who have a 3-1 record against the Mavericks aren’t tough teams? Common Sense dictates that seeding means nothing in these playoffs don’t you think?

      • OKCKD35 says:

        its ok i understand haters are going to hate, Denver was playing MUCH better than portland going into the playoffs as were the grizz playing MUCH better than the Lakers, we have a 7 games series to play. Go OKC!

  58. Vincent says:

    No Maverick player can match up against Russell Westbrook. For his critics, well they are in western conference finals because of his performances. A great match up to watch is Dirk Nowitzki against Kevin Durant.

    • defdun says:

      C’mon Westbrook is not that hard to stop. Often enough he selfdestructs by taking bad shots and not finding KD or the hot hand. Only 40% in FG% and 6.3 TOs in the losses against MEM show that he lost those games. And its gonna be the same against Dallas. If you close down KD Westbrook canot win the game for OKC.

      Only area where he harms you is in rebounding and J-Kidd can stop that being a good rebounder himself.

      So it just comes down to defending KD, and like Charles said he can’t post up, so guys like Marion, Stevenson and Brewer will give him a hard time.

      If Dallas wins game 1 and 2 they will go all the way. If OKC manages to steal one in DAL they have a chance…

      • Jake says:

        are you kidding, westbrook is only not a top scoring pointgaurd because he plays for the team, if KD doesnt turn up (which he has a tendency not to on certain days) westbrook can step up, hes averaging 22 ppg this season as a second man, not many pgs can compete with that as an undisputed second man. And you seem to be forgetting that OKC can score from elsewhere, Harden and even Ibaka can get points. And its not just points, its Oklahoma’s D that wins them games.
        And for people who criticize him for taking shots, what is he supposed to do when KD is double teamed and he has a shot on, youd expect any NBA player to throw it up.

        And before anyone claims bias, im an LA fan.

  59. The Unknown Sports says:

    Westbrook and Durant are a force to be reckoned with, but this guy does a good job explaining why the mavs will take it all: http://25twofour.com/2011/05/15/the-dallas-mavericks-will-beat-the-oklahoma-city-thunder-in-six-games/

  60. Fact Not Fiction says:

    Great game for Oklahoma. The bench came up big. Can’t wait for the next series.

  61. hahah... says:

    OKC.DALLAS vs THE HEAT in the FINALS!!!

    • Kevin says:

      except that the heat are losing..

      • Rolando says:

        The heat ain’t gonna lose player it aint over after game 1, you could be talking to soon.

      • Imad Akel says:

        im a heat fan. yeah im abit worried after game 1 but i think we have what it takes to counter this bulls’ team.

        i saw the bulls’ games before this one. man they sucked against the pacers and the hawks…those games were too tight and their feild goal percentage was so bad in those series. that’s why i wasnt worried i thought we (the heat) would own them when we get to them.

        But now i saw them against miami, im worried again….Lebron struggled abit offensively, they had good ball movement and good 3s, they had amazing offensive rebounds…We gotta crash the boards from all positions next game. Thibodeau is running a really tight ship. Its wierd how just now the bulls clicked into a great performance but in the first 2 series they didnt…Makes you wonder if being a lower seed gives you a better chance of beating a higher seed in the early rounds because some of the best teams improve with the more they play (e.g. bulls and mavs)

  62. HeatWave says:

    More credit needs to be given Collison and Harden. Westbrook did what he SHOULD have been doing the whole time which is creating plays 1st and taking the shot 2nd. Anyhow I’m glad they won the series cause I like seeing this team play.

    • Think About it Please says:

      But I don’t think anyone expects the point guard to get 14 rebounds.

    • LakersWillWin says:

      I personally think the ultimate Finals matchup would be Rose Vs. Westbrook.
      Thibodeau Vs Brooks… Two “fresh” coaches. Two young point guards. They HAVE championship experience from Fiba and know what it takes to win. I got my money on Chicago in the East, but I can’t count out Dallas. Dirk is unguardable, but maybe Durant will be able to guard him. He has the mobility size and speed for Dirk. We’ll see how they matchup, I can honeslty say these playoffs ARE more interesting and better matchups than the Lakers. Yeah, that’s hard to say too.

      • V.G. Lante says:

        Frankly I think that is one Major thing that is missing from KD, he NEEDS to WANT TO guard the best player on the other team. Especially if HE is the best Matchup Physically. If he had the Defensive Mentality a la Kobe when they all know who the go-to guy is HE wants to guard him..

        GAME OVER.

        HEAR MY THUNDER.

    • knowledgeandtruth says:

      I have to say something right now…. and I’m saying it not just as a Thunder fan, but as an NBA fan….

      The Memphis Grizzlies beat great teams all year, including winning records against the Mavs, Spurs and Lakers, and I am going to give them their props for absolutely manhandling the top seeded Spurs. Against the top seeded teams in the west Memphis not only held their own all year, but actually, and just the opposite to how Mavs fans are acting, totally kicked the teeth in of top teams.

      It makes me feel so sick that Mavs fans are saying things like “OKC beat an 8 seed, whats impressive about that” and “Memphis 8 seed this, just an 8 seed that”.

      It is an absolute mind bender to me that Mavs fans give no rcredance to OKC beating the Grizzlies, ateam that took out the number 1 seed and dominated the Mavs, Spurs and Lakers in the regular season, but give all the credence in the world to the Mavs for knocking out a Laker team that a blind man could see had gone off the rails by the time the playoffs came around.

      It just goes to show that Mavs fans aren’t really watching or paying attention tto other teams around the league. That, or you folks in Dallas have a completely misunderstanding of if a team is playing geat or not. Based on all the downer comments to Memphis for being an 8 seed and how you all think the Lakers were playing so incredible leading up, and in the playoffs, it’s obvious to me that is one or the other. Not one Mavs fan has really even close to realized how tough the Grizzlies played against great teams all year and how they not only beat, but absolutley took the heart out of the number 1 seed, championship experienced, veteran Spurs.

      Tha fact that OKC beat Memphis, a team that played absolutely great the last few months, and the fact that OKC beat Denver in 5 after Denever rode high into the playoffs as the best team after the all star break, that seems to mean nothing, and it’s your completely offbase comments about Memphis that have showed me why: aside from the Mavs, you Dallas fans just aren’t getting how great other teams are.

      In the case of Memphis, thats just sad…. Even grade school children can see how great Memphis played towards the end of the season and in the playoffs

      • defdun says:

        …lets see if OKC can beat a higher seeded team in the playoffs…maybe then Mavs fans and all the others will shut up.

        Right now all theve done is beat an 8th seed in a game 7 and finish off a 5th seed with a little help fromthe refs.

      • lil bit1 says:

        I’m a truly Mavericks fan. But, where did you hear the comment you made about Dallas Fans; “Okc. is just an 8 seed”. I talk to a lot of Mavs fans and I haven”t heard any on them think of the Thunder as such.

        I guess that depends on what area of the city you take your poll or hear these comments.

        I believe a lot of our fans give OKC. a lot of respect. I know I do.

        They are a great team and will play a very physical round with the Mavs. I believe the Mavs will win, but, not without a fight. (literally speaking).

      • Rich says:

        Memphis (and possibly OKC too) sandbagged to face the ailing SPURS instead of the Lakers. The same grade goodschool children who would think that the Memphis are great would say ‘but the MAVS are still the best’.