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It Was Just One Game.

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I wish Devean George had been healthy. I wish Greg Buckner had been healthier. I wish a foul had been called when Devin Harris was hit so hard on the head he couldn't feel his hands. I wish a fouls had been called when Amare pulled Stackhouse to the ground preventing him from grabbing a crucial defensive rebound. More than all of that I wish Dirk had made his free throws and Jason Terry had taken better care of the ball. No denying Dallas let that game slip through their fingers.


It's funny how the regular season doesn't matter -- until it does.

Bright Side of the Sun used to think Dirk was MVP - not anymore.

I said earlier that Dirk should be MVP. I was wrong. I'm changing my vote back to Nash. It's the way it should be. Dirk showed me that he still isn't the type of leader he needs to be. He still loses it when the going is bad. He can't rally his troops and win the game at the end unless things are going his way. I know the MVP, it's Steve Nash. Dirk is no MVP.
Tim MacMahon says "forget 70", Dallas has bigger things to worry about.
Forget about 70 and focus on top seed.

The Mavs never were concerned about hitting the 70-win milestone. Their fans shouldn't be anymore, either, especially since it's a real long shot now.

The Suns are a serious threat to steal the top seed. They're well within striking distance at 2.5 games back.
Shawn Marion now says he's the Defensive Player of the Year.
It was Marion's defense on Nowitzki that gave Phoenix a chance to rally ("Defensive Player of the Year, hands down," Marion said) and then take command in the first overtime.
Bill Walton says Phoenix will win the title.
"I think Phoenix is the best team in basketball," Walton said. "And I think the difference is the championship for Phoenix is not in Steve Nash's hands. It's in Amare Stoudemire's hands primarily, and to a certain extent, Shawn [Marion's] and Raja Bell's.

"They're the ones who have to finish. And Amare has a chance to be one of the truly unique players who redefines basketball."
Charley Rosen calls Dirk a choker.
Here's what Nowitzki did in the closing moments of the first OT:
  • Missed a free throw that would have clinched the game.
  • Made a silly pass that was easily intercepted.
  • Knocked down a wide open 15-footer.
  • Posted Shawn Marion, caught the entry pass, then quickly tossed it back out. Reposted, caught a second entry pass, then quickly tossed it back out. From here, it looked like Nowitzki wanted someone else to take the shot.
  • Pulled left and shot a 15-footer for the win that clanged off the front rim.
Yes, Nowitzki rebounded and passed as never before, but when the game was on the line, he did what he's being doing for lo these many years. Choked in the clutch.
Dan Brickley of the Arizona Central thinks this game was for the MVP too.
Meaningless game?

Try telling that to Mavericks fans, who booed their team, cheered their team and then left the arena in stunned silence.

Try telling that to Dirk Nowitzki, who seemed to have his first MVP award in lockdown, only to watch Steve Nash steal the game and maybe the trophy, too.

...And not only did Nowitzki miss a key free throw in regulation, but he lost his temper in overtime, too, getting nailed with a technical foul.

These things go a long way with MVP voters.
How out of it do you have be to not realize the fans were booing the officials?


Injury Update: Devin Harris says he has a stiff neck and the feeling in his hands was starting to return by games end. He expects he'll be ready for Boston.

Avery Johnson is planning to ease Devean George back in much as he did with Stackhouse.
Once he does come back, George will have his minutes restricted (about 12 per game at first) and won't play on the second night of back-to-backs. The next back-to-back is March 20-21 at New York and Cleveland.
George could have been a big help last night.
"When George is healthy, our lineup with Dirk at [center] against teams that like to play small is really effective," Johnson said. "When George is not out there we're not as effective with our small team.

"[DeSagana Diop] tends to play a little bit better against the small teams. It's a struggle for us sometimes to play both of our centers [Erick Dampier and Diop] major minutes against these type of teams."

Randy Galloway has a good article on 'Mavs Paranoia'.