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NBA Finals Game 6: Dallas Mavericks (3-2) vs. Miami Heat (2-3)

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If there was ever a time to break out all the cheesy clichés, that time is now.  For the Heat, their backs are against the wall, time is of the essence and its gut-check time.  If Miami wants to get a shot at winning an NBA Championship, the time is now, when the competitive juices are flowing and the AAA will be a bedlam packed palace of pandemonium, full of White Hot electricity and fans begging for one last momentum swing in the Heat's favor. 

Following their Game 5 loss in Dallas, Erik Spoelstra presented his team with a hypothetical question for them to ponder on the flight home.  "If I told them, on the first meeting up at the Air Force base, that if we would have been able to play six months of a season and to fight hard to get a homecourt advantage and to be in a position to go home in Game 6 to play two games on your home court to win a world championship, would we take it, yes or no, back on October 1st?"

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It isn't as though they are being presented with an insurmountable task.  We've seen Miami right there at the end of every game they've lost, just unable to get the clutch baskets at the right time.  On a team with several guys who are more then capable of hitting big shots and taking over a game, the components are all there.  The Heat just need to figure out how to get their offense flowing against the Dallas defense.

One concern Miami fans apparently need not worry about is the injured hip of Dwyane Wade.  He said after practice on Saturday that he will "be totally fine when it comes to tomorrow", and he looked to be moving without any problems when shooing around with teammates.  He was still held out of the contact portion of practice for precautionary reasons, but both he and Coach Spoelstra said that he would be good to go for Game 6. 

Since going to the 2-3-2 format back in 1985, there has been 9 NBA Finals' in which a team returns home for Game's 6 and 7 trailing in the series 3-2.  The home team has come back to win the series 3 out of the 9 times, including last season when the Lakers returned home from Boston down 3 games to 2 and promptly won the final two games to claim the title.  For our sake, hopefully the Heat can make it two years in a row. 

GAME NOTES

  • For the first time during the playoffs, Miami is coming off of back-to-back losses. 
  • They haven't lost 3 consecutive games since early March. 
  • The Heat are 9-1 at home during this postseason, with that one loss came in Game 2 of the Finals last week. 
  • Mario Chalmers leads all players with twelve 3-pointers in the Finals.
  • Dallas is 7-1 this postseason when scoring 100+ points and are 3-1 when they allow their opponent 100+.
  • On the other side of that, Miami has cracked the 100 points plateau just 4 times, going 3-1.  They have given up 100+ only twice and lost both times.  
  • When looking at the total points scored in this series, the Mavericks have put up just 4 more points then Miami (463-459).
  • Dwyane Wade (hip) is probable for the Heat.
  • As for the Mavs, Brendan Haywood (hip) is questionable and Caron Butler (knee) is out. 

It's been over a week since the Heat had a home game, but the AAA should be an absolute madhouse by the time this one gets started.  Tipoff is set for 8pm and the game will be broadcast nationally on ABC.  Lets Go Heat!!