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The 2011 NBA Finals are ready to rock and roll here at Cappers Info, and we have our NBA picks for the third duel between the Dallas Mavericks and the Miami Heat.
NBA Playoffs Preview: Miami Heat @ Dallas Mavericks Game 3
Date: Sunday, June 5th, 8:00 ET
Location: American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX
Game Line: Dallas -2.5
Heat Notes: The Heat haven’t run across a whole heck of a lot of adversity in their run in the postseason to date. They won all three of their series in five games, and save for a blip on the screen in Game 1 against the Chicago Bulls, they haven’t trailed any of the three teams that they have faced. Now, they certainly have their adversity. Miami had a huge 15 point lead with just seven minutes to play before collapsing down the stretch. It couldn’t make free throws. It wasn’t driving the ball to the basket. It wasn’t getting any help from the supporting cast. Simply put, nothing was going right. The Heat did shoot 46.6 percent from the floor for the game, but when you consider the fact that LeBron James and Dwyane Wade must have had a half dozen dunks or easy lay ins between them, that shooting percentage doesn’t seem all that great. Shooting 16-of-24 from the charity stripe proved to be a killer. Give Wade and James credit, though. For the majority of 40 minutes, they were both aggressive with the basketball and got the ball to the hoop. Whereas it was the combination of Mario Chalmers and Mike Miller that really got the job done from the three point line in Game 1, it was Mike Bibby in Game 2 who had four three pointers. Wade ended the day with 36 points, six assists, five boards, and three steals, as he once again really stuffed the stat sheet. James had 20 points, eight boards, and four steals, but he also turned the ball over five times. Chris Bosh really hasn’t looked right in this series, as he is shooting just 9-of-34 from the field. He scored just 12 points in Game 2, numbers which just aren’t going to cut it for a man as important as this in this series.
Mavericks Notes: Dirk Nowitzki has now proven himself a worthy battalion in these playoffs. Against the Oklahoma City Thunder, he led the 15 point comeback in just four minutes that ended up breaking the backs of the new kids on the block in the Western Conference Finals. Sure, that was a fine display, and it was as good of a showing as we have seen since LeBron took over against the Detroit Pistons in 2007 and basically played them 1-on-5 on the road at the Palace of Auburn Hills. However, this one was even better and even more important for Nowitzki. The German national star looked like he was really struggling the entire night in Game 2 with his shot, perhaps being hampered by his newly injured finger with some ligament damage. However, he scored nine points in a row down the stretch, including a three pointer that capped the huge comeback to give Dallas a lead that it would never relent. Five years ago, Nowitzki was the man that the finger was being pointed at for the Mavs blowing that 2-0 series lead going back to Miami. Now, he knows that he needs just three more wins, all of which can come on his home court, to erase all of those memories and to finally bring a title to Dallas in something other than football. Of course, it wasn’t just Nowitzki that was big for Dallas. Jason Terry came off of the bench, and in a tough assignment against James, scored 16 points, while Tyson Chandler had a huge game with 13 points and seven rebounds. Shawn Marion was outstanding as well, and he was really the unsung hero on the day, scoring 20 points and coming down with eight boards. DeShawn Stevenson also hit a trio of three pointers to help out the Mavericks to boot.
The Final Word: Miami needs to be very, very careful over the course of these next two games especially. The Heat really can’t afford to fall behind 3-1, knowing that there is a do or die Game 5 that will also be played in Dallas. We definitely believe that the Heat are the better team, and we do certainly think that this series is going to end up going back to South Beach. However, on this night for Game 3, we tend to believe that Dallas is going to ride the wave of emotions over arguably the best chance that the team has ever had to win a title, and parlay that into a Game 3 romp.
Free NBA Playoffs Picks: Dallas Mavericks -2.5
Miami Heat vs. Dallas Mavericks Prediction: Dallas 101 – Miami 84