Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Round One: Owned

First off, I would like to thank Mark Followill and Bob Ortegel for outing and shaming the Wood Block Guy on TV last night. I also want to thank Bob Ortegel for saying the phrase, “Mark, you can steal my thunder any time!” It made me giggle.

The Mavs beat the Spurs in five games which was one less than I had even allowed myself to dream they could do it in. More amazing to me was the fact that ESPN’s humourously named Accuscore prediction widget, up until game time yesterday, still had the odds of San Antonio winning the series at something like 72%. The lesson? Do NOT take ESPN’s Accuscore to Vegas with you. But it kind of amazes me how “meh” the rest of the country still is about the Mavs. Don’t get me wrong. I prefer it that way. I like being the team no one cares about. I like having low expectations.

But aren’t we and the Lakers now the two Western Conference teams that got it done in five games? And didn’t the Lakers get it done against the #8 seed Jazz while we took down the San Antonio Spurs, the #3 seed? And didn’t we do it without a huge showing (until Game 5 and even then I would argue that “huge” would not be totally accurate) from our star players? Don’t we have the Sixth Man of the Year? Haven’t the Mavs gone on a 10-3 streak here at the end of the season which puts them alongside the Lakers and Cavs for that same time period? I’m just trying to figure out why the Mavs shouldn’t get a smidge more respect than they are getting. Again, I’m not complaining. I like it when the Mavs have to prove stuff.

To finally break the cycle of getting bounced from the playoffs in the first round in flagrantly embarrassing fashion seems like reward enough for me. But now I have a little bit of bloodlust and I want more. I’m not gonna lie. Denver scares the beejesus out of me. Let me rephrase that. This year and with Chauncey Billups, Denver terrifies me. In the previous two seasons, I remember going to Mavs-Nuggets games and the most entertaining things I could hope for would be a Dirk-Najera handshake or someone holding Boykins’ car keys over his head after the game was over. But now the Nuggets are good and that scares me. Which should make for good, albeit tough, basketball.

I was also astonished at how sportsmanlike and gracious both teams were after the final buzzer last night. And how very little taunting and “Suck it, Spurs!” I did last night. Even Mark and Bob commented on how friendly the atmosphere between the two teams was after the game. Which can only mean one thing. Manu Ginobli is the troublemaker. He’s the bad seed. I knew it.

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