Monday, May 01, 2006

Don't Get Those Brooms Out Yet

Picture this: After a day of drinking that started at around 7 in the morning, a college kid stumbles back to his room to watch his favorite team play in a road playoff basketball game. The smell of alcohol makes his stomach turn, so instead of grabbing a beer, he puts on his best team shirt, one that says DIRRRRRRRK on it. The tip happens, and he doesn't notice. The first quarter ends, and he still has no clue what is going on. All he can remember is saying "Josh Howard is on fire, and Jason Terry is playing like crap." At halftime, he puts his head back in the chair and his eyes close. He regroups and realizes that may be he should lie down and watch the game in comfort. On the way to his bedroom, he feels something come up from his stomach. BUT he pushes it back down. He lies in bed with a blanket over his head and listens to the game playing on the television. With about 4 minutes left in the third quarter, he gets out of his daze and watches the game with the blanket covering his entire body except for his left eye. At the end of the third, he sits up in bed to watch. Stomach still unsettled and still very drunk. His team is playing okay, but he still doesn't remember ever having a lead. His team is close to overtaking, but it can't get over the top. The next thing he knows, the player whose picture is on his shirt, cans a 3 and makes a vintage goofy face. Now, our drunk college friend is wide awake and is seriously into the game. Other drunkards come into his room to see what the rutkus is about. But poor defense comes into play, which is expected after finally getting a lead for the first time since early in the first quarter. The team's only chance is for poor free throw shooting, AND THEY GET IT! The kid's legs are shaking out of excitement. Down by 3 with thirty seconds left, the team misses a short floater. Sick feeling. Missed putback. Even sicker. Ball is batted to the backcourt where a sure collision is about to take place. Namesake takes a rainbow that reminds the kid of a man on the telecast. The kid leaps out of bed in joy yelling any variation of the form YES. The stomach disagrees. The kid fights it and tells himself his team will win if he can push down his stomach troubles. Opposing team has a driving lay-up at the buzzer. Something's coming up...

But I pushed it back down! No puke! Mavs win in OT! Dirk hits a 3 that made Reggie Miller say WOW. Dirk played defense for an entire game! Mike Fratello wore the ugliest shirt/tie combo I have ever seen an NBA coach wear since Nellie wore those fish ties!

I don't remember much from the game. Cowlishaw wrote a column about how great the defense was. Can't argue that. But Dirk's 3! What can I say? As a fan, you just know euphoria. Ask Lakers' fans (if there are any true diehards).

As for Game 4, don't expect a walk in the park. The Mavs are still on the road. The Grizz still want to win a playoff game. But of course, I think the Mavs will win.

They need this sweep for two reasons: One is to finally close out a series for once in their recent history. The only seven game series the Mavs have one in the last 5 years have been gone seven games. That's not right. The other is that if they win this game, they will face a team (most likely Spurs, but I've got a wait-and-see attitude right now) that will have played a six or 7 game series. This is a must-win just like games 1, 2, and 3 were must-wins.

Let's light 'em up.

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