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3 things from the Mavericks frumpy loss to the Heat, 95-99

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Dallas just couldn't produce enough points in the fourth quarter. 

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Miami Heat Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Every time the Mavericks walk into the American Airlines Arena, the ghosts of ‘06 and jubilation of 2011 do the tango. Both Miami and Dallas have come a long way since 2011. They’re both bottom dwellers in their respective conference with one eye on the lottery and another on their long playoff odds. On this evening, both teams played with a lively spirit with Miami coming out on top 99-95.

Goran Dragic slithered through pick and rolls en route to a 32 point evening. The Mavericks had no answer for him on the defensive end and no one to match him on the offensive end with Harrison Barnes and Dirk Nowitzki going cold in the second half. The loss to the 12-30 Miami Heat doesn’t bode well for the Mavericks dim playoff chances, but it might add a ping pong ball or two.

Parade to the rim

Miami made it their mission to attack the rim early and often. They have a stable of guards with expertise in the slashing department. Goran Dragic leads the bunch and he diced the Mavericks defense all evening. His name has been swirling in the trade rumors recently, but Dragic looked like the 2014 version of himself who garnered third team All-NBA honors.

Dion Waiters and Tyler Johnson chipped in on the second unit to provide a scoring punch when the Mavericks went up double digits in the second quarter. Dallas just couldn’t stay in front of the crafty Heat guards, which kept Miami in the game all night.

A wild J.J. Barea appeared

The 32 year old Puerto Rican jitterbug has been relatively quiet since he returned from a calf injury in December. The American Airlines Arena must have filled Barea with the spirit of 2011, because he caught fire in the third quarter. Dallas couldn’t get anything going in the third quarter and relinquished a double digit lead. Barea started creating the kind of havoc we’ve become accustomed to seeing with him. It still feels really bizarre that he’s turned into a dynamite shooter, but it’s a skill the Mavericks’ bench desperately needs.

Harrison Barnes looks more and more like Dirk each day

Harry B. had a modest evening by his standards, but he continues to put on the best Dirk impersonation in the league. Late in the second quarter, Barnes caught the ball at the nail, took a couple hard dribbles towards the basket before nailing a beautiful spin jumper. The Dirk-esque sequence was topped off with Barnes berating a ref afterwards because he got hit on the arm. It’s astounding just how far Barnes, and our collective perception of him, has come.

Also, this layup looks oddly familiar.