- Associated Press - Sunday, June 12, 2011

MIAMI (AP) - As Dallas continues to hold a slim lead, we move closer what would be the eagerly awaited moment when David Stern hands the trophy to Mark Cuban.

One of them could definitely have something good to say.

Stern loves the passion Cuban has for the Mavericks, loves that the Mavs have one of the best in-game experiences in the league. And he hates that Cuban sometimes has too much to say about the league and has often made him pay for it in the wallet.

Cuban has racked up well more than $1 million in fines, and Stern nailed him for $250,000 during the 2006 finals for a series of embarrassing actions. But he’s been quiet lately, a silent stretch that might finally end if the Mavs hold on to win.

And if it does, the first words he speaks might be to Stern.

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Back for the second half, and Dirk Nowitzki is back in the scoring column.

Nowitzki hit his first shot of the second half, then another short jumper as the Mavs opened a five-point lead early in the third quarter.

He was just 1 for 12 for three points in the first half, a shockingly poor performance considering how good he’s been in this series and throughout the postseason.

Meanwhile, LeBron James has two points since scoring nine of Miami’s first 14.

You have to figure one of these two former MVPs will turn it around in the second half.

The way this series has gone, the logical pick would be Dirk.

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If you’re the Dallas Mavericks, you’re thrilled you’re up two with next to nothing from Dirk Nowitzki.

Or maybe you’re mad that you let a big lead get away so quickly.

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