The Dallas Mavericks aren’t feeling betrayed and bewildered about their Game 1 loss to the San Antonio Spurs. For battle-tested veterans like Dirk Nowitzki, Shawn Marion and Vince Carter, the late-game collapse that took place was nothing new. The Mavericks have seen it all. And now with the explosive Monta Ellis, Dallas has what it takes to make this series vs. the juggernaut Spurs interesting.
Normally, it’s a younger team that pulls off these uber-upsets in the first round of the NBA playoffs, but the Mavericks have played up — or down — to the level of competition all season long. That is why Dallas had a chance to win the first game of this series and why they just might turn the basketball world on its axis by taking San Antonio out in the first round.
Of course, the biggest key in a series like this for the underdog is stealing a game on the road. Should the Mavericks manage to do that tonight, it would actually make losing Game 1 a beautiful thing as it would enable Nowitzki and his feathered friends to fly back to Dallas riding what is known as ‘momentum’.
Game 1 was a darn chess match, which is why it’s kind of fitting that Boris Diaw and company have such interesting accents. The competition on the court is too global and cerebral, and Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle has to outdo his masterful game plan from Game 1 in order for the Mavericks to even think about uttering the word “checkmate.”
The only thing more amazing would be Greg Popovich‘s facial expression and non-response.