Despite Dirk Nowitzki’s 4 three pointers in the 4th quarter and banging on the door of a win, the Dallas Mavericks were not able to close the deal and lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder again, 95-91.
I’m going to take a moment to vent about my team. I know I’m supposed to be supportive and all and I am, but the end of this game was such an atrocious thing, that I was screaming at the television and wanted to go through it and rip someone’s head off, mainly Jason Terry.
When Dallas played the New Jersey Nets the other night and the last play that didn’t work out the way it was supposed to, JET was visibly upset about and couldn’t understand why the play went the way it did with Jason Kidd taking the desperation shot instead of it going to Dirk or someone else. Well, JET, I want to ask you the same question about last night. Not once, but twice, JET blew plays that could have, possibly, won the game for Dallas but chose to make the plays himself when there was someone open to his left and on one he passed the ball to Kidd when Kidd was trapped at the end line almost at the basket with a man on him and no way to make a good play.
JET rushed the shots on both plays and needless to say, didn’t connect on either one of them; then he leaves a 3 point shooter open to make a shot that gave Oklahoma City the final lead and eventually won the game.
Dallas played hard throughout the first half and even had a back and forth lead, but because of plays like these, Oklahoma City capitalized on our mistakes and scored the ball, well that and they got the calls for the night by going to the line to attempt 33 free throws to Dallas’ 10; 10 free throw attempts throughout the whole game is another atrocity that was demonstrated in Oklahoma City. When Ian Mahinmi as they say committed hit 6th foul, no matter how many times you looked at the play, there was no foul, it was a straight block, but needless to say, they called a foul, Serge Ibaka goes to the line to attempt 2 free throws and Mahinmi goes to the bench for the remainder of the game.
But a more blatant foul was committed on the other end against the Mavs, but no whistle, no foul, play on; what a crock of calls being called. I know that you are going to win some and you’re going to lose some, but this was a ridiculous game to lose.
Thank you for letting me vent. Now to the game itself. As I said, Dallas as a team started off good with the exception of Brenden Haywood turning his ankle on the very first play of the game, but we have a deep bench and thank goodness we had Shawn Williams since Brandon Wright is out of the system right now due to a concussion he suffered the other night in Memphis.
Even though both Dirk and JET started off to a slow start personally, the team was shooting very well in the first quarter and only trailed the Thunder 26-23 at the end of the first quarter, but then came back like gangbusters in the second and scored 29 points to Oklahoma City’s 19 and had a 52-45 lead going into halftime.
But then again those second half gerbils entered the locker room at halftime and the Thunder got the jump on the Mavericks and outscored them 23-13 in the third and took a 68-65 lead into the final quarter of the game.
Anyone and everyone watching knew that Dirk and the Mavs wanted this win, here they are the defending champions, had beak Oklahoma City in the Western Conference Finals last season and had already lost to them 2 of the 3 times this season and needed to get back to winning and causing others to lose. Dirk hit some of his shots for the night, but none bigger than the 4 three-pointers he hit in the fourth, that’s why it dumbfounded a lot of people as to why JET didn’t pass the ball back to Dirk, who was open, in the last play to try to win the game.
Russell Westbrook led the Thunder with 24 points, Kevin Durant had 22, James Harden added 16 and Kendrik Perkins had 7 points and 14 rebounds and Ibaka had a block night with 6 blocks, at least it wasn’t 10 like last game.
When you look at the numbers part of this game, Dallas should have won the game, hands down, the shot 42.9% from the field, 42.9% from the 3 and completed all 10 of their free throw attempts and had 38 points in the paint. Dallas had 15 turnovers and 36 rebounds.
Oklahoma City shot 38.2% from the field, 29.6% from the 3 and 87.9% from the free throw line and had 28 points in the paint. They committed 15 turnovers also and had 45 rebounds.
There were 13 times during the game that the score was tied and there were 10 lead changes and at one point, no team led by more than 5 points, but the biggest lead was only a 10 point margin.
So when you look at numbers, outside of the difference of 7 rebounds, Dallas dominated the number sheets, except one, the final score. Now with this loss, we go back home to face the New York Knicks before they go on a 3 team of back to back to back road trip where when it’s all done, Dallas would have played 9 games in twelve nights and the last of these would be 5 games in 6 nights in 5 different cities. Needless to say, there is no rest for the weary and Dallas will have to get their rest when they can and where ever they can.
With this loss, Dallas is still barely holding the #6 spot in the Western Conference, tied basically with Denver, but have the upper hand since they beat Denver and only .5 game ahead of Houston who is in the 8th seed, but the good thing is they are only 1 game behind Memphis who holds the #5 seed and 4 games behind San Antonio who is #2 in the Conference and sitting at the top of the Southwest Division, so there is still hope for Dallas.
First we take on the Knicks, Tyson Chandler should get his ring, then on to Phoenix, then off to California to face Sacramento and finish the road trip against Golden State on Saturday and then come home. The next week will be a little bit better one with Dallas playing all three games at home, so maybe some good home cooking and rest will be good for the Mavs and get to the final round of play with some wins under our belts.
With that, I will bid you a good day and say good luck and let’s go Mavs!