Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 2/15/12

When you say “third time is a charm”, Dirk took it to heart. After trying to end the game in regulation and in the first overtime on the final shot and they didn’t fall in, it was the third time that finally sealed the win for the Dallas Mavericks over the Portland Trailblazers.

Dallas led throughout the entire regulation part of the game and there were times that they had as much as an 18 pont lead and then the inevitable happened, they got comfortable and started making stupid, crazy mistakes that resulted in turnovers, 23 to be exact, which exacted into points for Portland. This team doesn’t need any help to add points on the board, because they have enough talent to get those points on their own and we don’t need to help them, but they did.

It is even worse of a situation when your own broadcasters are stating that this didn’t resemble that of a professional basketball game with all the silly plays going on especially in the second half. As I stated, Dallas had a large lead at one point and then, yuck intervened the players bodies and decided to play instead; kind of reminded me of the movie “Space Jam” when the Monstars were body snatching the pros to play Michael Jordan and the Looney Tunes in a game.

This carried on for a while until again, right at the end of the game, again when both teams decided it was time to gear up again and play like the pros they are. The most exciting part, well outside of the first half, but in the second half, the most exciting part was the last 20 seconds of the game; Dallas had a 81-79 lead on the Blazers and Lamarcus Aldridge got the ball, went into the low post and put up the shot for the tie or win, the shot tied the game at 81 with now only 12 seconds left. Once Dallas got the ball in, it went to Dirk who went up for a shot to give Dallas the win, but the ball rimmed out and so now we were headed for overtime.

During overtime, the ball went back and forth as well as the score. Dallas had never relinquished the lead all night long, the game had been tied at times, but Dallas had never been behind until overtime. Portland was determined to get the win in Dallas and by the way the Mavs were playing, it looked as if they were going to let them do that very thing.

At one point Portland had a 85-81 lead when Dallas finally got a shot to go in and then later Dirk found Marion breaking to the inside, got the pass off for the lay up and now we are tied again at 85 and with only 1:08 left in overtime. Dallas finally took a 87-85 lead with only 30 seconds left and again, Aldridge got the ball and with 24.9 left again tied the game at 87 each. Dirk again took the ball to the inside, tried to get his shot, but was not able to convert, so now we are headed to double overtime.

Into the second overtime, Dallas scored first and had a 89-87 lead, when Raymond Felton got off a circus shot under the rim to tie the game at 89, but was fouled also, but missed on the free throw attempt. Dallas was able to get the ball and then got a 93-89 lead when Portland scored and again brought the game to a 93-93 tie with 1:43 left. Dallas was determined not to have another overtime, so Delonte West found a breaking Marion going into the paint, passed the ball off, but the shot was missed. But Marion’s determination and constant battle for the ball under the basket for the rebound, eventually got the ball to go in giving Dallas a 95-93 lead.

Now with only 45.3 seconds left, Portland got the ball and tried for another tie, but was unable to convert the basket and Dallas got the ball and headed up court. Dirk had a look of great determination in his eyes and in his demeanor, he took the pass from JET, had 2 defenders on him at times, but with 22.6 seconds left, did his fade-away half-step shot and this time, the ball went up and in, nothing but net. Dallas now had a 97-93 lead and the big German was so ecstatic, you couldn’t read what he was saying, but let’s just say he was happy!

With that shot, Dallas pretty much sealed the deal on the game and the win and sent Portland home with the loss and Dallas could prepare for their next opponent, the LA Clippers.

This was a definite game of testament of sorts because if you look at the stat sheet, Dallas should have won this game hands down without too much difficulty, but the one number that sticks out like a sore thumb was 23. The turnovers in this game were atrocious, 23 to be exact for Dallas and 15 for Portland and that’s what kept the Blazers in the game. The other stats except for the free throw percentage, was in Dallas’ favor. Dallas had trouble converting free throws into points by shooting 68.4% to Portland’s 90.5%, but the Dallas shot 46.4% from the field to Portland’s 37.1% and Dallas shot 31.6% from behind the arc to Portland’s 15% and Dallas had the upper hand on the rebounding, 57 to 46. So you can see that Dallas did very well in all the other parts of the game, except protecting the ball.

Now Dallas is doing fairly well in the standings at this point, but in the West, every day things can change and you can be on top of the hill one day and at the bottom the next, so they are going to have to do a better all around job on the court and protect the ball, protect the lead and beat the teams they are supposed to beat, but also beat the contenders as well.

Next up is the LA Clippers at home and with all the hoopla of “lob city”, Dallas is supposed to have their hands full with the “Blake show” and CP3, but if the Mavs will play their type of ball, they should be able to handle anything that comes their way, and with that I bid you a good day and say good luck and let’s go Mavs!

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