In four NBA Finals' fourth quarters, LeBron James has three baskets. He's been outscored in the final quarters of this series by Dirk Nowitzki, 44-9.
In Game 4 he not only scored a playoff career-low 8 points -- first time in 433 games he's been held below 10 -- he let Jason Terry blow by him off the dribble three times during the Mavericks' rally from nine points down to an improbable victory that tied the series 2-2 and set the stage for tonight's dramatic Game 5.
While Dwyane Wade is re-establishing himself as an elite superstar and the unopposed leader of the Heat, LeGone James has yet to score a point in the final five minutes of a game in which the margin has been five points or less.
And now old nemesis DeShawn Stevenson is calling him out, saying James "checked out" of Game 4.
The self-proclaimed King has been humbled, if not humiliated.
Said James yesterday, "It's that time that I get myself going."
His Tweet this morning at 1:27 a.m.: Now or Never!!
Take cover? Or take comfort?
While LeBron will likely play his best, most aggressive game of the season, Nowitzki has a history of being pretty dang well in Game 5s himself:
In the Dirk Era (2000-Present) the Mavs are 8-9 in Game 5s. Dirk has played in all but one of those -- he missed the San Antonio West Finals in '03 with a sprained knee -- and has averaged 29 points and 11 rebounds.
In Game 5s at AAC Dirk is 4-1, including his 50-point, 12-rebound game against the Suns in the '06 West Finals.
Year Opponent Points-Rebounds Result
vs. Spurs 15- 9 W
at Spurs 31-9 W
at Nuggets 32-10 L
at Hornets 22-13 L
at Warriors 30-12 W
at Spurs: 31-10 L
vs. Suns: 50-12 W
at Heat: 20-8 L
vs. Rockets 23-13 W
at Suns 34-10 L
at Kings 31-14 L
vs. Blazers 35-11 L
vs. Kings 16-15 W
vs. Spurs DNP-Knee W
at Kings 32-12 L
at Jazz 18-4 W
at Spurs 42-18 L
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