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Running Blog For Game 6 Of The 2011 NBA Finals

A couple of weeks ago, this seemed destined for Miami. But does it fly back with the Mavericks to Dallas tonight?

Hello, party people. Let’s all get together for another one for More Talk’s fireside chats.

Tonight, the stage is set for Game 6 of these NBA Finals, where one of three overall storylines will emerge and lead all sports chatter:

The Dallas Mavericks are champions, which will lead to more LeBron bashing

The Miami Heat force Game 7 because of someone other than LeBron James, which will lead to more LeBron bashing.

The Miami Heat force Game 7 thanks to LeBron James, which I’m sure people will forget and just start asking: “why didn’t he do this sooner?” It’ll be a lose-lose-lose situation for him.

Personally, I think the Heat are going to win this game. I mean, don’t you want to see a Game 7 in this type of series? It’s been thrilling every step of the way, and everyone should want as much of it as the NBA can offer.

5:09 p.m. Anyway, we are off! Chalmers takes the first shot and airballs it. Nice.

5:09 p.m. But I think he deserves to be in the starting lineup tonight, as he is.

5:10 p.m. LeBron his the first shot of the game — a 3. We’ll see if that leads to anything.

5:15 p.m. Right now, we know it’s leading to baskets. LeBron is on fire right now as he has hit his first four shots to give Miami a four-point lead with 7:46 to go in the first quarter. Three of them were jump shots, which I guess it good, but you know everyone wants to see him drive the lane more.

I get the feeling nobody cares, really, if it’s not the fourth.

5:18 p.m. Dirk has missed his first two shots, but the offense is being picked up by Barea and Marion, which is a good sign for that team overall. You’re not expecting too much from J.J., but he has played great in the last couple of games.

5:20 p.m. This series has been fantastic, but since I was celebrating a friend’s birthday yesterday, I missed all the off-day chatter. I really needed that; all of the talk has been ridiculous.

5:22 p.m. Miami looks so confident with its shots so far.

5:23 p.m. Dirk now has as many points as fouls: two. He’s coming out of the game for the forever awkward Brian Cardinal. That second foul was pretty cheap. Strike out the conspiracy theorists who think the NBA is going to do everything it can to make sure Miami wins this game.

5:24 p.m. Jason Terry comes in and connects on his first two shots for five big points. Timeout as the Heat lead, 22-20.

Not bad for Dallas to be right there with Miami considering Dirk is on the bench with foul trouble, is just 1-for-3 from the field, and the Heat are shooting 53 percent.

But here’s why that’s a bad thing to say: Remember Game 5? The leading storyline from that game at the half was that Dallas was shooting 60 percent from the field or so, but didn’t hold a big lead. People thought it had to average out in the end? In the end, Dallas still won, so “hanging in there” is overrated.

5:25 p.m. Also, Dallas has hit 8 of its first 12 shots, so there’s that.

5:29 p.m. That whole LeBron-Wade mocking Dirk thing is exactly why I was glad that I didn’t watch sports TV yesterday. The coverage on that has been so stupid. It’s not even an issue.

5:30 p.m. Another high-scoring first quarter tonight. 27-24, Dallas, with two minutes left. Jason Terry looks very determined.

5:32 p.m. Two fouls now on Chandler. But that was a good charge call by the ref.

Yet, Dallas keeps scoring as Terry puts down a beautiful layup.

5:34 p.m. DeShawn Stevenson takes what should be considered an awful shot early in the shot clock, but he sinks it for a 3. I find him very annoying to watch, but I’ll give credit to Stevenson for hustling for the loose ball, which led to his 3.

Eddie House hits a 3 on the other end to close out the quarter

Mavs lead, 32-27, at the end of the first quarter.

5:36 p.m. Dallas shooting over 60 percent again in a first quarter — 61.9 percent in this one. Miami doing a nice job at 50 percent. But if Dallas is going to hit that same percentage from beyond the arc, what are you gonna do, right?

I mean, I know that sounds simple and lame, but it’s the truth. Miami is not going to win this game if Dallas keeps shooting such a high percentage from outside.

5:39 p.m. Dirk is back in the game and missing a shot — a 3 from the top — in the opening seconds of the seconds quarter.

5:41 p.m. Miami is treating the ball with about as much security as a real-life Paul Blart.

5:41 p.m. Nice fight and desire shown by Ian Mahinmi

5:42 p.m. DeShawn Stevenson is still annoying … BUT HE CAN SWAGGER WALK ALL HE WANTS IF HE KEEPS DRAINING 3s!! Of course, if that was Dwyane Wade getting his swag walk on … .

Stevenson is 3-for-3 from downtown and has nine points in three minutes. The Mavericks are now up by 12, — 40-28 with about 10 minutes left in the half — thanks to that hot shooting and six Heat turnovers.

5:45 p.m. By the way, that 3 by Stevenson came on a 3-on-2 Dallas break. Again, it wasn’t a great decision, but that doesn’t matter. The end justified the means.

5:48 p.m. To answer Jeff Van Gundy’s question, the  drinking age in Germany for those drinking wine and beer is 16. It’s 18 for liquor. So to say they look 12 is almost true.

5:48 p.m. And of course the Heat are right back in it with seven quick points, helped out by Eddie House (another guy I don’t like) and capped by a steal and a layup by Chalmers. Although it looked like Barea flopped at first, Chalmers definitely pushed him as he went in for the score. 40-35, Dallas.

5:53 p.m. Miami’s offensive efficiency has really picked up. The Heat are still on a run, and a lot of those points have come on the inside.

5:54 p.m. The action is occurring so quickly, I can’t keep up. The Heat are now in the lead and are on a 14-0 run, but that’s not really what matters now because we got A FIGHT!

Or a skirmish. Or what Sarah Palin would call a squirmish.

After another Eddie House 3-pointer, a little on-court quarrel breaks out between Udonis Haslem and DeShawn Stevenson. Then, Mario Chalmers gets his Napoleon Complex fully charged and intervenes for now reason, leading to a show from Stevenson and a bunch of guys coming in off the bench.

5:58 p.m. The officials are still sorting this out. I think Stevenson and Chalmers get a tech, but no other penalties. Some players may get fined, but nothing warranting a suspension took place.

6:00 p.m. The refs agree with me on the techs, except they also gave one to Haslem for the initial contact and for turning back toward Stevenson after DeShawn Stevenson shoved him. Ticky tack.

6:02 p.m. I wish Mike Breen would stop mentioning how Dallas is only down by one or a couple of points despite Dirk’s shooting struggles. It really doesn’t matter. The Mavs are still trailing, and his points are just going to other players.

6:05 p.m. Three fouls on Chandler with 4:17 to play in the half.

6:06 p.m. Big power move by LeBron around Dirk for a layup. Miami up four, but Terry answers for three.

6:07 p.m. At the half, I want to go back and listen to the discussion between Erik Spoelstra and Steve Javie about the technical fouls. It looks like someone said something of humor that brought some laughs.

Thanks, DVR.

6:08 p.m. Dirk is 1-for-9, but Jason Terry is really picking up a lot of the slack. He just hit another 3-pointers and has 17 points in 15 minutes. He is 7-for-9 from the field and 3-for-5 from deep.

6:09 p.m. Whew, this game is carrying on a quite an exhilarating pace. Last night’s party has slowed my reaction time today, so I feel like I played some quality minutes in this first half.

6:13 p.m. 1-of-11 for Dirk. It’s been some good defense by Miami, forcing some tough shots, but those are usually his type of shots. The looks have been decent considering how and where Dirk likes to shoot. But they are just not falling.

6:16 p.m. And the half comes to an end with another miss from Dirk.

Mavs lead, 55-53, at halftime.

But hey, who cares; Jason Terry is doing everything he can.

Miami is shooting a slightly better overall percentage — 50 to 48.8 — but again, Dallas is killing it from 3-point range. The Mavs are 7-for-13 there. Miami can’t win that game.

6:21 p.m. Both teams are uncharacteristically bad at the free-throw line tonight. Heat: 9-for-14; Mavs: 4-for-7.

Miami has eight turnovers but were much better with handling the ball later in the second quarter.

6:23 p.m. And how about Eddie House and DeShawn Stevenson combining for six 3-pointers on seven attempts. Just makes feel a little dead inside.

6:29 p.m. So I’ve spent the last few minutes trying to listen very carefully to what Javie said to Coach Spo during their discussion about who was going to get hit with technical fouls. The moment of humor that I alluded to earlier came when Javie pointed at Juwan Howard and apparently said “We almost got him first to give him some respect.”

Ha. Ha?

A lot of it is not inaudible, but it’s at that annoying level where it’s not very clear to the ears. It’s something that I’ll be trying to decipher later tonight. I know we now have coaches wearing mics and we have cameras in the locker room during pregame and halftime speeches, but you always want things you can’t have. Or in this case, things you weren’t really supposed to hear.

6:36 p.m. And let’s start the second half!

6:37 p.m. The first point goes to Dirk, who hits a mid-range jumper. 2-for-13. Progress.

6:39 p.m. Miami took a short-lived lead and now with Dallas back up by one, Miami misses two more free throws, thanks to Mario Chalmers. That makes it 9-for-16 from the line.

6:41 p.m. You give one of these teams just 90 seconds or so, you’ll get a sizeable run. The Mavs are currently on an 8-0 run and are up by six, 63-57. Miami calls for a TO after Marion reaches higher than Wade for a rebound, which leads to a basket.

6:44 p.m. This 8-0 run took Dallas just 105 seconds.

Miami’s 14-0 run in the second quarter took just a bit less than three minutes.

6:46 p.m. Chandler has four fouls now. That’s something to really keep an eye on, not even halfway through the third.

6:47 p.m. Hahaha, oh boy. LeBron James gets called for shoving away Barea. Yes, LeBron just committed an offensive foul while being guarded by one guy, and that guy is a foot shorter than him.

You think that will be brought by the James haters if Miami loses this game? Yeah, a lil’ bit.

6:50 p.m. Bosh gets one of two at the line. Miami is throwing away free points.

6:51 p.m. Dirk connects for his first 3-pointer of the game. Dallas is now 9-for-18 from that range tonight.

6:54 p.m. Dwyane Wade picks up a technical foul of his own for arguing a charge call. That is utterly stupid by Wade, but I thought Cardinal’s left foot was moving while Wade was in the air. It was very close.

Regardless, Wade screwed up by getting the T. People I’m sure will say that frustration carried a tinge of panic. And I probably wouldn’t disagree.

6:56 p.m. And now a fan is getting escorted out of the building by some very large men. Yeah, people may be starting to freak out just a bit.

But hey, the passion is nice.

6:59 p.m. A Game-7 suspension for something like leaving the bench is absolutely, 100 percent, no doubt preposterous.

7:01 p.m. Terry with another bucket. Who needs Dirk?

7:02 p.m. Dallas up by five with 1:11 left in the third quarter. The Mavericks don’t seem to like leading in the fourth quarter until it becomes a necessity.

7:03 p.m. Juwan Howard misses two free throws — no respect earned there — as Miami has now gone 14-for-24 from the stripe.

And Jason Kidd throws down a 3 as the shot clock expires. The Mavs have missed 10 from long range. But they have also made 10. Sick.

7:05 p.m. This is becoming an epidemic for Miami at the line. LeBron goes 1-for-2.

7:06 p.m. Ian Mahinmi hits a jumper from the free-throw line to end the third quarter and give Dallas a nine-point lead.

Mahinmi in last-second offense. You think that’s how Dallas drew it up? Uh, probably not.

Mavs lead, 81-72, at the end of the third quarter.

Man, Miami. Missing free throws. Losing some cool. Fans getting ejected. Ian Mahinmi beating them at the buzzer. Not looking good.

7:10 p.m. Fourth quarter. Here we go. LeBron? Anyone on Miami?

7:10 p.m. Another 50-50 trip at the line for Miami, this time by Haslem. Rough.

7:12 p.m. Wade goes strong to the basket and gets the dunk while being hacked by Dirk. Pretty awesome move.

And of course, he missed the free throw.

7:13 p.m. Oh, man! J.J. Barea just sprained Eddie House’s ankle and nailed a deep 3. Then he grabs a rebound while next to Chandler and Nowitzki. He’s a free agent, folks!

7:15 p.m. After Terry steals the ball from Wade and makes one of two free throws — Dallas is only 8-for-12 from the line — Miami calls timeout. Dallas leads, 85-77, with 9:30 to play.

LeBron will now enter the game after being on the bench to start the quarter.

7:16 p.m. There’s a ton of time left, but this game feels over right now. As I said earlier, if Dallas keeps feeling the 3 ball, Miami is not going to catch all the way up. Mavs are 11-for-23 from deep. Heat are 5-for-16. There’s your difference and then some.

7:19 p.m. Chandler and Dirk are both on the floor, both with four fouls.

7:19 p.m. Jason Terry with another smooth pull-up jumper. Dallas by 10. Then Wade commits a turnover by dribbling off his own foot.

Miami is feeling the weight of the season all on them.

7:21 p.m. Barea drives the lane, and it parts like the Red Sea! An easy, too-easy layup and Dallas is now up by 12 with just 8:21 to play. Full timeout, Miami. What can Coach Spo or anyone do to stop this? I don’t think anything much.

7:23 p.m. I must have missed that brick from LeBron that hit nothing by glass. From less than 10 feet out, that was a shot full of pressure.

7:25 p.m. Chalmers gets a 3-point play thanks to a horrible call on a layup. Even Mark Cuban said “that’s horrible.” It was. It looked like a charge more than a block. It looked like nothing more than a block. Chalmers actually made the free throw (huzzah!) and the Heat are now back to within nine, 87-78.

7:27 p.m. Four straight points from James in the fourth. That’s news.

7:27 p.m. Where is Jason Kidd? Dallas knows the situation, and its offensive sets are getting antsy.

7:28 p.m. Three-point play by Bosh as there is the fifth foul on Chadler. The lead is down to seven with about six minutes to play.

That’s followed up by an interception from Mario Chalmers. Momentum is building for the Heat, but as Chalmers drives to the basket off the break, he gets rejected by Jason Kidd, who gets fouled.

That is a HUGE PLAY from Kidd!

Dallas leads, 94-87, with 5:32 left.

7:32 p.m. Chalmers fouls Kidd on the ensuing possession, and he only gets one free throw down. Practice your free throws, kids.

PLEASE! This is an awful display.

7:33 p.m. James tries to save the Heat’s possession, but he steps out of bounds as he tries to get the ball. Turnover.

7:34 p.m. Another Miami turnover as the Heat pass up a couple of open shots and Chalmers gets out of control.

7:35 p.m. Dirk and Wade exchange shots. Wade looks like he is limping a bit. Dallas up by 8.

7:36 p.m. Miami can’t get back into this game if they can’t get a rebound. Dallas has gotten three of them in the past two minutes and it has led to four points.

Dirk sinks a baseline jumper with two defenders in his face! 99-89, Dallas, with just 2:27 to play

Dare I say it … dagger.

7:38 p.m. Dirk has had a bad shooting night, but he is coming up large in the fourth when his team needs him. Like a star.

7:39 p.m. Terry with a jump shot that’s good. Dallas up by 12 with about two minutes to play.

7:39 p.m. LeBron answers with a 3. Thank God. I hope he has a strong finish, because of this discussion is making me sick.

7:41 p.m. Miami has quit.

With about a minute left, Miami misses a shot and Dallas gets a rebound. Now, it’s a nine-point game with 50 seconds left.

You have to foul, right?

Not Miami! The Heat just stand around and let Dirk get a championship-clinching layup. Then, Chalmers turns it over. Nice job, guys.

7:43 p.m. LeBron plays the last 18 seconds with his shirt untucked. That shouldn’t be an issue, but it will be.

7:45 p.m.

The Dallas Mavericks are NBA Champions. 105-95.

7:46 p.m. Oh, OK, I shouldn’t bury the lede:

The Miami Heat are not NBA Champions.

7:49 p.m. That’s what everyone cared about. LeBron and Co. have been vanquished. Let the celebrating begin in Dallas, Cleveland and basically everywhere else except Miami.

7:54 p.m. At least LeBron was right about one thing: Not one. Not two. Not three. Not four. Not five. Not six. Not seven. Nope, these Miami Heat do not have an NBA championship.

Man, let the cheap shots come from all over the place. It’s going to be open season on crushing the Heat. It has been like that during the season, but at least they had the defense of they are still playing for a title this year.

7:57 p.m. But yeah, as I watch this postgame celebration for the Mavs, we have to realize that they actually won. Dirk is vindicated. Kidd finally gets a title. Jason Terry’s tattoo is prophetic. Mark Cuban can talk again. Even if they had beaten someone other than the Heat, I’d be happy for Dallas. This group has a lot of deserving players and a lot of great stories.

8:03 p.m. Unfortunately, those aren’t the stories that will count in the eyes of many.

But hey, let’s not put this one on LeBron. No one on the Heat did anything of substance late in the fourth quarter.

8:06 p.m. “Jason Kidd’s DNA is all over his team’s title.” — Mark Jackson.


8:07 p.m. Good point from a friend on Facebook:

“Here’s my rush to judgment: Dirk is SHOWERED with praise, partly because he walked off the court right after. He’s going to be lauded as what a ‘champion’ is supposed to be. And what is unfortunate is that the narrative will likely be used as a juxtaposition of LeBron, which is not fair at all.”

Yeah, pretty much. But as I said to him, everything seems juxtaposed with LeBron. It’s the fad. He never receives full praise for great things and is always dammed for bad things. Or indifferent things. Or things that are OK, but not great. Or things that are great, but not deemed to be accomplish at any important enough time.

It’s stupid.

And with that, I end this blog. I’ll have much more to say about this game (read: LeBron) later. Thanks so much for following along and/or checking in!

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