I was oh so tempted to want to write about the Dallas Mavericks' run through the NBA playoffs, but just did not want to deliver any kind of kiss of death. So, now is the time to say -- congratulations to Mark Cuban and his team for dispatching the overhyped Miami Heatles. I have to say, there is a certain sweetness and justification to beating the Heat.
For any criticism that Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki has received for shrinking back over the past several years in the playoffs, he answered all of that criticism...and then some...in the 2011 playoffs. Nowitzki absolutely dominated in the playoffs through the first three rounds and finally in the NBA Championship. Of course, Nowitzki had some help...veteran Jason Kidd, dynamic Jason Terry, energetic J.J. Barea and enforcer Shawn Marion, among others, made significant contributions to bring home the hardware to Dallas.
I have to confess that I have had a hard time rooting for the Mavericks since they had not been able to put together a championship run, while in the meantime their nemesis, the Spurs, down the road in San Antonio, have won four championships over the past dozen years or so. Yet, they have earned maximum respect for their efforts in 2011. The monkey is off of their back, and they have gained a new legion of fans...myself included.