JJ Barea Was Huge for Dallas in Game 5

The diminutive point guard carved up the Miami Heat defense, and helped push the Mavs to the brink of an NBA title. From the Star-Telegram: “Dribbling through the trees is something J.J. Barea is accustomed to, but missing countless shots over those trees is not something the little guy is used to. After repeatedly proving he could dribble through the Heat trees to get to the basket but unable to finish or create plays, Barea was finally the contributor the Mavs needed him to be. Little J.J. Barea scored 17 points with five assists in the Mavs’ 112-103 win in Game 5 on Thursday. ‘He was able to get into the paint and break us down,’ Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. To put Barea’s Game 5 into immediate perspective, he had combined to score 21 points on 25 percent shooting in the previous four games. As a starter for the second time in as many games, Barea hit 6 of 11 from the floor. And he was part of a 3-point shooting performance for the Mavs that bordered on perfect. Barea made 4 of 5 from three-point range. ‘Barea’s penetration was terrific,’ Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. ‘He got going with his outside game and inside game, which really helped us.'”