Mavs Over Miami: Dallas Beats the Heat Again, Sweeps Season Series!
For the second time in less than a month, the Dallas Mavericks have beaten the Miami Heat.
In between, the Heat have won 12 straight games.
Elias Sports Bureau reports that the Heat 12-game win streak bookended by the losses to the Mavericks is the 2nd-longest such streak in NBA history.
Because the two teams only play twice, the Mavs have swept the season series.
Not many players currently were on the team when the Mavericks played against Miami in the 2005-06 NBA finals.
But it has to be gratifying to players like Dirk Nowitzki (pictured) and Jason Terry to face this year's Heat squad and beat them both times.
Terry has spoken often about how losing to Miami in the 2006 NBA finals still upsets him.
The following are some of the reasons the Mavs have shutout the Heat in their two games:
It All Starts wtih Dirk
When Dirk Nowitzki is at his best, so are the Mavs.
When Dirk struggles, so does his team.
But one of the great things that is happening with the Mavericks this year is that Dallas doesn't need Dirk to do it all anymore.
In the two games against Miami this year, Dirk has scored 22 and 26 points, respectively.
While he didn't have fantastic shooting nights either game, he was money from the line, a combined 13-for-13 and grabbed a total of 15 rebounds.
Tyson Chandler Is a Force in the Middle
One of the major differences in the Mavericks this season is the consistent and dominant play of Tyson Chandler.
He plays great post defense, clogs the middle and grabs more than his share of boards.
In the first game against the Heat, Chandler had one of his best nights as a Mav.
He scored 14 points and grabbed 17 boards (including seven offensive rebounds) and blocked three shots.
In Game 2, he scored eight points (on 3-of-3 shooting, and he made both of his free throws) and grabbed 10 rebounds.
The Butler Did It!
In his first full season with the Mavs, Caron Butler is finding his place.
With his size and length, Butler provides match-up problems on the perimeter.
Against Miami, Butler came out firing in both games.
In Game 1, he led the team in scoring (23 points) on 9-for-15 shooting from the field, including a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond the arc.
In Game 2, he scored an important 13 points.
Marion Has Been on Top of His Game!
Shawn Marion is playing this season with a renewed energy and sense of purpose.
He has elevated his game to where the Mavs hoped he would be when they acquired him before last season.
Even though he doesn't always score a huge number of points, he is making contributions all over the court.
In Game 1 against the Heat, Marion scored 14 points and grabbed five boards in just 24 minutes.
In Game 2, he scored seven points but grabbed 13 rebounds and played exceptional defense against whoever he was matched up against.
Marion was a big part of holding LeBron scoreless in the first half of Game 2.
Jet Terry Has Taken Off!
Regardless if Jason Terry starts or comes off the bench, he is ready to contribute.
And for Terry, that usually means creating instant offense through his shooting and even in handing out a few assists.
In Game 1, Terry scored 12 points and handed out four assists.
In Game 2, Terry scored 19 points, all in the last 11 minutes of the game.
Kidd Just Runs the Show
While occasionally Jason Kidd will score in double figures, his value to this team is in running the show.
He rarely makes a bad decision with the ball, and he still has a knack for getting the ball to his teammates in a position where they can score.
In Game 1, Kidd only scored five points, but he handed out 13 assists and grabbed eight rebounds.
In Game 2, Kidd scored seven points, handed out seven assists and grabbed five boards.
His steadiness throughout the game helps the team get on track or stay on track.