Once again, at least for the opening moments, the Heat have taken the best the Dallas crowd had to offer to open a game and handled it fairly well.
A few pregame stats and one key tweet for you:
_ Dwyane Wade has one turnover in his last 101 minutes, 58 seconds of on-court time.
_ The Heat have not scored 30 or more points in a quarter in their last 34 quarters. Haven’t given one up in the last 28, either.
_ JJ Barea started two games this season for the Mavs. Until tonight. (Move is now official, even though there was no doubt after DeShawn Stevenson said he wasn’t starting.) All-time, he’s 34-15 as a starter.
_ Heat reserve Dexter Pittman calls LeBron James “big bro.” Which might clear up the mystery in this tweet he posted a couple hours ago: “Here we are. Game 4. 2 more. Big bro zoned out. I know he bout to be a freaking monster tonight. He focus like a lion hunting for prey”
(And one more reminder _ send those questions on Twitter to “ByTimReynolds” _ and we might get to them during the game.)
The blue shirts are back.
The mood in Dallas, though, is anything but blue entering tonight’s Game 4 of the NBA finals.
Yes, the Mavericks are making some lineup changes, which will likely disappoint the Heat because they were amused by some of the things DeShawn Stevenson was saying on the off day yesterday. Seems like Stevenson is out of the lineup in favor of JJ Barea. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle isn’t saying it yet, but Stevenson is, so that seems good enough.
The Mavs know the reality. Go down 3-1 tonight and this series is over. Too big a mountain to climb, especially with the potential of two games in Miami.
The Heat know that too, of course.
Dwyane Wade was saying this morning that the Heat are trying to block out the 2-1 series lead and play this game as if it means everything. LeBron James says Dallas losing tonight won’t doom the Mavs _ extremely political correct there _ but that the Heat don’t want this turning into a best-of-three series, either.View Entire Story
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