2011 NBA Finals Preview

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After seven months of playoff basketball (a slight exaggeration thanks to the damn TV schedule), the Finals is finally upon us.  While a rematch of the 2006 Finals, both the Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks are different teams from five years ago.

The Heat have a bonafide “Big Three” (LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh) that are willing to silence the haters stemming from that corny-ass stage show in South Beach before training camp.  The Mavs are a more seasoned bunch with a bonafide superstar of their own in Dirk Nowitski – only this team the Mavs are a hungrier and tougher bunch.

That said, here is how I think this series will shape up…

Miami has more talent on paper than Dallas.  In the NBA playoffs, more talented teams win series and championships most of the time.

But just because Dallas is not as talented, does not mean it should be taken for granted.  Even though the Mavs have one star player, their role players will pose a challenge the Heat has yet to see.  A few of the Mavs role players can go for 20 points on any given night.  They have a few players who can rain 3-pointers in their sleep (Jason Terry and Peja Stojakovic).  Their bigs are brawny and tough.  PG Jason Kidd gives the Mavs that crucial postseason experience.

Having said all of that, I still like Miami.  I think the Heat will have Bosh rotate with James and Udonis Haslem in guarding Dirk.  At least Bosh and James have the foot speed and the length to guard Dirk without the need of any double-teams.  That means the Heat will stay at home on the Mavs’ shooters, causing Dirk to tire out from going one-on-five all series.

Heat in six.

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