Mavs/Spurs Game 3 Recap
Forget his nose. Manu broke the Mavs’ spirit.
Pop quiz: What’s more broken, Manu Ginobili’s nose or Shawn Marion’s jumper?
We should have known better than to claim the Dallas Mavericks as the potential heir to the Western Conference throne. Big Brother has shown up and popped Dallas in the mouth two games in a row, this time in a 94-90 victory in Game 3. Poor Dirk Nowitzki must be expecting Steve Nash or Michael Finley to be sitting on the bench next to him. It’s just like old times.
The usual suspects have stayed the same for the San Antonio Spurs in their punishment of Dallas, the roles have just reversed. Tony Parker is the 6th man assassin, Manu Ginobili the never quit slasher with a nose for the rim and Dirk Nowitzki’s elbow. He came back into the game after suffering a broken nose that will require a CT scan on Saturday. He is rumored to star with Carl Landry in the summer blockbuster “Bows and Arrows,” the companion piece to Russell Crowe’s “Robin Hood.”
What separated San Antonio from Dallas in Game 3? A sense of urgency. San Antonio jumped out to an early lead and knows when to tighten up on defense. Dallas, on the other hand, looks lost at times. If I see Jason Kidd standing still on defense as the ball gets swinged to the weak side one more time, I swear I am going to scream. I don’t ask you to keep up with Tony Parker. Just look like you’re trying okay?
It’s time to start calling Tim Duncan “Mini-Cuban” because he is the cat who really owns the Mavericks. For the second straight game he dropped twenty-five on the Mavs.
The Spurs are also got production in the last two games from George Hill. If he can continue to put 17 on the board they won’t have to rely so much on Richard Jefferson. Umm, maybe it’s best to just go ahead and stop relying on him anyway.
The Dallas Mavericks are down 2 games to 1 in this series in large part because of two missing ingredients, a killer instinct and toughness. Up 9 in the third quarter, they failed to make any separation from San Antonio. Unlike the Spurs they weren’t able to hold off a run, and we all know every team makes one down the stretch. The additions of Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood were supposed to make this a more nasty, physical team. Lesson learned. Never trust a Wizard. You didn’t learn that when your girlfriend suckered you into buying the Harry Potter books? Damn.
Instead of our typical recap to finish, let’s hand out some awards for Game 3.
The Old Faithful Lifetime Achievement Award- Who else would we give this to except Timmy? If Manu Ginobili is the monster truck you can ram into things on the way to the top, Duncan is a Honda Accord. He won’t turn any heads but he will still be running with 200,000 miles on the engine while your Ford Mustang, aka Caron Butler, stalled on the road.
The Game Breaker- Manu Ginobili gets the nod for pulling his best Paul Pierce impersonation, giving inspiration to his teammates by returning with a broken nose.
Gregg Popovich “Dog of the Game”- I’d divide this between Brendan Haywood and the corpse of Erick Dampier but I’m getting accustomed to them sucking. Maybe we should call them the Fantastic Four, as in how many points they seem to average between them. Enough about them. The Dog of the Game is Caron Butler.
Best Atlas Impersonation- Dirk Nowitzki must have sore shoulders from carrying the Mavs so often in this series. Weren’t we saying the reason Dallas would win this series was because they had more weapons to take the pressure off my favorite German? Guess not.
Game 4 presents a do or die situation for Dallas. They’ve already surrendered home court to San Antonio. It’s over if they go down 3-1. The San Antonio crowd will be rabid Sunday, perhaps because a few of them went to the Bat Cave in Austin. Manu may have been punished in Game 3 but he’s going to be the one out for blood, and the Mavs, who were the best road team in the regular season, must find a way to stop him.
Memo to all Dallas Mavericks except Dirk Nowitzki, especially Shawn Marion. You are in the f%&ing Playoffs! Now act like it. We’re going to pick Dallas for the win simply because we want this series to go the distance. If San Antonio drops Dallas again we may be looking at the most dangerous lower seed headed into the second round of the Playoffs, because Dallas isn’t coming back from a 3-1 deficit. Reality bites, huh Mark Cuban?