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Wednesday Linkage

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Sefko has some quotes from the Mavs on how they are trying to get some 'swagger' before the postseason.

"I'm going to take the optimistic route," Terry said. "We will grab this opportunity and we will move up. You can take that however you want to take it. That's our focus and mind-set. The only way we can do that is to win this game, and that will be the first step and that's what we're going to do."

"If you lack confidence in this league, you don't stand a chance," [Dirk said]'  "We got to have a swagger and walk on the court like we're supposed to win this game."

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Coach Carslisle actually answered a question about Howard's status with more than a three word answer.

"The ankle has responded positively over the last month or so, but it was swollen up after the Miami game, so we had to hold him out of Memphis," Carlisle said. "It wasn't because we disrespected Memphis or didn't think we needed him.

"Josh wants to play. It's been very frustrating for him. But this is a situation we have to manage as a franchise intelligently. We got to try to keep him tuned up to play, but we can't overdo it and get the ankle swollen and sore again. It just doesn't work. We hope he can play, but I just can't tell you at this time."

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Tim Cowlishaw writes on the importance of the seventh seed.

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Dwyane Wade -- still pissing Mavs fans off.

[Dwyane Wade] missed a free throw in the final seconds that would've iced the win for Miami over New Orleans.

So we go to OT. And on the final Miami possession, Wade refuses to accept the screen and go right, instead dribbling into a crowd (and into quick-handed defender Chris Paul) and ... without anyone touching Dwyane or the ball ... Wade coughs it up into the hands of Peja.

New Orleans wins and retains its No. 6 spot, a little more comfortably ahead of Utah and Dallas.