Mario Chalmers scrambled under the basket and found a cutting Dwayne Wade who sank a three-pointer to give the Miami Heat a commanding 88 – 73 lead with 7 minutes and 14 second left in the fourth quarter of game 2 of the 2011 NBA Finals. Dallas Mavericks Coach Rick Carlisle sued for time and the Miami Heat with Lebron James and Dwayne Wade were fueling the crowd’s cheers as the Heat sense a commanding 2 – 0 lead in the series. But then again the celebration went way too early as the Mavericks uncorked a paralyzing 22 – 5 run that ended with a Dirk Nowitzki lay up to escape with a 95 – 93 win and even the series at one game apiece.
Dejavu, that sums up the 2011 Playoffs for the Dallas Mavericks as their vaunted offense finally came to life in the last six minutes of the game with Jason Terry waking up from his game 1 nightmare to score eight points as he presided over an 8 – 0 run by the Mavs after Carlisle’s time out. The early celebration might have defocused the Heat as their offense suddenly sputtered as Wade, James, Bosh and Chalmers all missed their jumpers in that stretch which allowed the Mavericks to comeback. The Mavericks have been in this situation in the conference finals as they wiped out Oklahoma’s 15 point fourth quarter lead to win in overtime but this one tops it all.
While Terry ignited the rally, Nowitzki finished off the Heat with his fourth quarter clutch shooting as he scored seven points in the last minute to give the Heat their first home loss in the play-offs which some say might be their last game in Miami. Nowitzki score off a jumper and a three pointer but none was bigger than his lay up with 3 seconds left to give the Mavs the victory. It was rumored that Nowitzki might have a hard time scoring since he tore the tendon in the top knuckle of this left finger late in game 1. But as they say heroes rise to the occasion as his winning shot was a left handed lay up over Chris Bosh.
It was a sorry loss for the Heat moreso for Dwayne Wade who finally exploded as he led all scorers with 36 points with James adding 20, Mike Bibby scoring 14 and Bosh 12 points. Nowitzki’s 24 points were all hard earned and he got great support from Shawn Marion who scored 20 poinyts on 9 of 14 shooting. Jason Terry and Tyson Chandler scored 16 and 13 points respectively. As they say whenever a team wins on the road the series becomes a little more interesting which is what the next three games in Dallas will be.