NBA Finals 2012: Predicting Who Will Be Studs and Duds

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NBA Finals 2012: Predicting Who Will Be Studs and Duds
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

It always seems like the NBA Finals are decided by a few players, both stars and reserves, either exceeding expectations or not playing to their potential. Last year the lights out shooting and crunch time chops of Dirk Nowitzki coupled with the disappointing effort and fourth quarter disappearances of LeBron James were instrumental in the Dallas Mavericks winning their first championship. It should be no different this series as the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder square off in a much-anticipated battle for the Larry O'Brien trophy. 

Each team is counting on several players to perform at a high level while also trying to limit the other team's key players by exploiting matchups and employing certain defensive tactics. In a series like this, where each team has some distinct advantages, there will undoubtedly be a few men who rise to the occasion and a few who struggle out on the court. 

With Game 1 looming, let's take a look at who will be a stud and who will be a dud in the 2012 NBA Finals...

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