May 29th, 2011 09:20 EST
Dead Heat: The NBA Finals and The Miami Heat
Fi-fi-fi is the new fo-fo-fo. The Miami Heat have taken a page out of Moses Malone`s book and blazed through the NBA playoffs, winning each round in five games. Good teams like the Boston Celtics and Chicago Bulls can`t stop them.
The Heat had their ups and downs throughout the regular season, but they`ve proven that with their Big Three of Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, and Chris Bosh, they can beat just about anybody when a championship is on the line. But it`s not enough to win it all this year.
The Dallas Mavericks are the challengers for the title, and their hunger to win is greater. Their best players may be old, but they also know that this may be their last chance for a championship. Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd have cemented their places in NBA history, but they don`t want to look back on their careers with any regrets.
This was evident in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. The Mavericks were down by 15 points in the 4th quarter, and they could have easily given up and lived to play another day. Nowitzki said no. He took total control and tied the game with two free throws. In overtime, they rolled past the Thunder. Two days later they advanced to the Western Conference Finals.
It won`t be an easy win, though. Lebron James is sick of being denied a championship. The Heat added Mike Bibby to the roster in the middle of the season, so now they have a better bench to help out James, Wade, and Bosh.
They beat the Boston Celtics, only three years removed from a championship, in the second round. For the Conference Finals, they faced the Chicago Bulls. Many thought this would be a classic back and forth series, since the Bulls had the best record in the NBA this year and featured young MVP Derrick Rose. None of that was enough to beat the blazing Heat.
The Mavericks have help from veterans Shawn Marion and Peja Stojakovic. Their coach, Rick Carlisle, has waited too long for a championship. The most telling example of how serious they are is that they beat the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2nd round, and the Lakers have won the last two championships. They didn`t just beat the Lakers.
They swept them. It may be more logically sound to think that the Heat will win the Finals, but weird things happen in these times. The intangibles have a tendency to take over. The Mavericks will win in six games with Nowitzki showing everyone why he`ll be in the Hall of Fame someday.