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The San Antonio Spurs and Dallas Mavericks could match up for one of the most intriguing first-round battles in recent history, as arguably the two greatest power forwards of their era go at it. Five times previously, Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitzki have squared off in the postseason.
That matchup has spanned 26 games, with Tim Duncan holding the series edge, 3-2, the game edge, 14-12 and the scoring edge, 26.0 to 24.5. Duncan has also out-rebounded Nowitzki, 12.3 to 10.1.
The Spurs and Mavericks have faced off 77 times, regular or postseason, since the two future Hall of Famers have been playing. During that span, the Spurs own the series edge, 42-35. What's amazing, though, is the average margin of victory is less than half a point.
The Spurs are all but locked into the second seed if they don't win the first, and the Mavericks are going to have a tough time passing up Memphis, who is playing extremely well and has the second-easiest remaining schedule in the NBA, or Houston, who has the sixth-easiest.
Is anyone really disappointed if this is the series, though? This is "where amazing happens," and I'm sure this series would not disappoint.