"Holy crap, Dirk has a 102 degree fever, Jason Kidd died, and Jason Terry ran his mouth about LeBron James." I swear to you those were my thoughts as I prepared to observe the crucial Game 4 between the Mavericks and Heat. If, while reading my thoughts, you heard a glimmer of hope you heard wrong. Instead, the sentiment was more along the lines of the feeling you would get if Brad Pitt shot your girl a flirtatious glance. Really? I have no shot.
Then the game played out and something happened I never imagined, James played more like "pre-Gasol" Kobe Bryant. He just looked disinterested. Almost, as if to say, "fine, you think it's Wades' team? Let's see how they do without me." Seriously, I have watched the game twice now and that is the only conclusion I can come to. James' inability to get involved crippled the Heat. The Mavericks had no business winning the game. Terry finally contributes with 8 points in the 4th quarter, Kidd slashed to the basket and made the defense work (oh yea, that was Barea) Kidd continues to be dead, and Dirk was missing shots he would normally hit with ease. Yet, it was enough.
As both teams head into Thursdays Game 5, we see two stories shaping up rit in front of us. The Mavericks are finding just enou ways to stay in the games and make this one of the most exciting series in history, while the Heat are on the verge of tearing at the seems. Yes, the Heat prognostication seems a little drastic but if James comes close to emulating Game 4 than will they not be unraveled?
As a fan of the Mavericks, I offer no predicition or false hope ( if I did it would read like this: LeBron James takes every shot in the first quarter and then walks off the floor with both hands flashing "#1" never to be seen again. But I won't share hopes). Instead, I hope we continue to see a great series. Let's appreciate greatness when greatness is before us.