Sunday, May 22, 2011

Are the Mavericks the Most Battle-Scarred Playoff Team in the NBA?

You could almost make the case for that.  And it might just be a reason why the Mavericks could be primed for one of their most successful seasons in franchise history. 

We've focused all offseason on just how playoff-tested the Mavericks are.  Jason Kidd, Dirk Nowitzki and Peja Stojakovich each have at least 10 years of postseason experience.  The rest of the squad, save for Corey Brewer, Dominique Jones, Brian Cardinal, Rodrigue Beaubois and Ian Mahinmi, all have at least five years of playoff experience.  All this postseason experience and, let's be honest, disappointment each individual player and Mavs head coach Rick Carlisle have been through with other teams have shaped this 2011 Mavericks squad.

It's made the Mavericks a hungry, smart team that understands not to take a ride on that emotional roller coaster than can be an NBA postseason.

But no one put it better than Jason Terry on Sunday before the Mavs watched film of Game 3.

"You look at each individual, almost to a man, Peja Stojakovich: Sacramento vs LA, he didn't get it done. Myself and Dirk: in the Finals up 2-0, didn't get it done.  Coach Carlisle: two Eastern Conference Finals, never made it to the championship.  Jason Kidd: two Finals appearances, didn't hoist up trophy.  Someone told me the other day Shawn Marion's been to Western Conference Finals twice, hadn't got the Finals.  Those unique stories in itself (is) what drives us and motivates us to get it done this year."

We know getting it, a championship, is the goal this season.  Can this be the team that finally does it?  I think it's in better shape, both mentally and physically, than the team that made the Finals run in 2006. 
3 comments on "Are the Mavericks the Most Battle-Scarred Playoff Team in the NBA?"
  1. As a Spurs fan, I have been lucky enough to see multiple championships. I really think for the first time the Mavs have a good chance of winning a championship. I know a lot of people did not like the Spurs because of the way they would slow down the game and win UGLY.... Last night, I saw a little bit of that in the Mavs. I hope they keep it up and get their 1st championship... There is nothing wrong with winning ugly, just win.....

  2. Interesting thought. I hope you're right. Still fear the 1998 and 2006 scenarios. Fear the East teams too, even though I think they're beatable. I think Mavs might need a couple days between series too.

  3. I like the playoff pedigree The Mavs, as currently constituted, have and think they do have a legitimate shot at getting the hardware this season. Those veterans have been through the battles and, I believe, have a sense of urgency in realizing their window is closing. I only worry about the delicate psyche The Mavs still have (Game 3 was far closer at the end than a team with cut-throat will and determination would have allowed.) and what seeing The Heat in The Finals may do to their heads. Lots of demons to account for...


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