Game five of the 2011 NBA Playoffs was quite possibly one of the most thrilling and exciting NBA Finals games you will ever see. In spectacular fashion, the Dallas Mavericks outplayed the Miami Heat to take a 112-103 victory and 3-2 series lead.
Both teams shot the lights out. But Dallas was simply unconscious. Dallas shot 13-19 from beyond the arc, most of which was contested shots that still found their way to the back of the net.
While all eyes were focussed on how LeBron James would respond after his Houdini act in Game 4, it was Jason Terry who stole the show.
LeBron had a solid game with 17 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists, but it’s a triple double that is sure to be scrutinized. In the first half, Wade suffered a hip injury and missed extended portions of the game. It was then that everyone expected LeBron James to go into attack mode like we saw him do in both the Chicago and Boston series. That didn’t happen. LeBron was more aggressive than he was in game 4, but with Wade out for extended periods of the game, Miami could have used a little more from LeBron. This was one of those games where LeBron had to go off for thirty plus. James continues to struggle in the fourth quarter, notching only two points in the crunch time of Game 5 and totalling only four free throws for the game.
But you can’t put this loss on LeBron James, the Dallas Mavericks deserve all of the credit. Even though Wade returned in the fourth quarter and played inspiring basketball, picking apart the Mavericks defense and pushing the Heat into the lead, Dallas had a response for everything.
J.J Barea had his best game of the series, so did Jason Terry, so did Jason Kidd, Tyson Chandler played very well, Dirk Nowitzki was his usual spectacular self, the entire Mavericks team played amazing basketball in game 5.
Jason Terry became the Jet again in the fourth quarter scoring 8 points including a dagger three pointer on LeBron’s dome. But it was Terry’s playmaking that was the difference. Terry had 6 assists and was able to find open shooters and Tyson Chandler in key situations for easy hoops. Both teams shot over 50 percent for the game, but Miami was simply unable to stop Nowitzki and the Jet down the stretch.
With the win, the Mavs are just one win away from the franchise’s first NBA Championship. The winner of game 5 in series tied a 2-2 goes on to win the Finals 83 percent of the time. Miami fans will be hoping that all of LeBron’s talents show up as the series shifts to South Beach for games six and seven.