Beat L.A.? The Mavs Might Replace Them on the Mountaintop.

Sharp shooting and shoddy predictions on the Mavs' road to the NBA Finals.

As well as Dallas played, the Lakers were equally inept.

Ironic that the Mavericks swept the Lakers and now have the inside track to The Finals without any contribution from Caron Butler or Roddy Beaubois. At one point this season, they figured to be Dallas' second- and third-best players. The addition of Stojakovic in January was a patch, at best, but suddenly he's shooting and playing defense like it's 2003. And it's Barea, the pesky Puerto Rican, who has morphed into Beaubois, with a little less speed and a lot more savvy.

But in the end, the Mavericks beat the Lakers by making a four-game playoff record 49 3-pointers (to L.A.'s 15) and by outscoring their bench a whopping 208-89. Live by the jumper, advance by the jumper.

Kobe Bryant realizes he forgot Mother’s Day.
Zuma Press
Kobe Bryant realizes he forgot Mother’s Day.

The end was sad and deliciously humiliating for the Lakers. Bin Laden put up more of a fight. Down 32, Jackson didn't even leave his seat during a timeout. And Odom and Andrew Bynum were ejected after cheap-shot fouls in the fourth quarter. L.A. forward Matt Barnes' blueprint to beating Dallas: "Punk 'em." The Mavs' retort: "Sweep 'em."

Biggest danger for the Mavs is treating their licking of L.A. as the destination instead of the midpoint. It's a peculiar mind-set, but in these playoffs, with Barkley driving Dallas' bandwagon and Cuban staying eerily quiet, sweeping the Lakers and kicking Jackson into retirement has to be harnessed.

Offers Cuban simply, "We believe."

In the last seven months we've been treated to Rangers over Yankees, America over Osama and now Mavericks over Lakers. Is it too much to ask for medicine over cancer, followed by Mavs over Heat and—better late than never—a parade along former mayor Laura Miller's old route?

At this point nothing would surprise me.

Or make me happier.

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What's up with these ratings there Richie? I hear your light'n it up. Let's see'em. Have you guys cracked 2? I'm sure that cume is kick'n ass all over the place right. Come on RW hang that skin on the wall for us to see.


Wouldn't this piece of "journalism" been a little more timely on Monday? Frankly, this is a re-hash of every other article written about the Mavericks in the last 7 days. Thanks again RW for your timely, brilliant article that added exactly zero to the Mavs overall 2010-11 portrait.

5,4,3,2, and your done.