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OKC Loud Links: Finals Head Back to Miami

As the Mavericks and Heat return to Miami for the conclusion of this marvelous series, we ponder whether LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh have another level to ascend to in order to bring this competition to a Game Seven.

Post Game Five Quotes | Mavs Moneyball

Mavs coach Rick Carlisle continues to be nonplussed by this "Dirk" guy. Great wrap-up, as always. 

Heat Falter Late in 4th | Peninsula is Mightier

I speak from experience when I say, I'll bet the writers at the Heat blog are getting tired of writing that headline over and over. The game was right there to be had, and Miami's offense again lost the lead.

Deep Mavs Handle D-Wade | ESPN

In the first Daily Dime post, Stein writes about how the Dallas bench was critical in the win. Every man, including Brian Cardinal, had key contributions that put the Mavs a win away from the championship.

Dallas Shoots Lights Out | Ball Don't Lie

Be wary, young Russell Westbrook - the higher you descend, the more likely the media narrative will come crashing down on you, as LeBron can attest. In a game that turned into, "LeBron can't close," it should have been about, "Dallas knows its ABC's."

Miami's Defense Finally Breaks | Sports Illustrated

Game Five was a continuation from Game Four, where the Mavs have demonstrated an ability to stay two steps ahead of the Heat defense. This issue, and not James, will probably be the factor that determines whether Dallas wins on Sunday or not.

More links after the jump.

A History of Rule Changes | Negative Dunkalectics

This is extensive but well worth the read to see how the rule changes in the NBA have impacted the game, and conversely, how the game has impacted the rules.

On the Verge | Basketball Prospectus

Pelton is right - the is LeBron's team, and it is always going to take on his persona, for better or worse.

LeBron Teeters on Ultimate Finals Failure | Yahoo! Sports

 Can the ultimate front-runner craft an ultimate come-back victory?

James With Opportunity to Redefine Himself | Sports Illustrated

LeBron James can still tweet "Now or Never!" and be correct - Game Six is his moment to prove that what we think about him is wrong.

No Royal Performance From James | ESPN

Props to Hollinger for managing to work the word "viscount" into a story about basketball.

Why the Charge on LeBron Was the Right Call | NBA Playbook

Late in the game with the Heat trailing by two, LeBron James took a pass and went baseline, crashing into Tyson Chandler. It appeared that Chandler had not established his feet outside of the restricted area, which should have made the call a blocking foul. Did the refs blow it?

Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda | ESPN

I think this sentiment is similar to how Thunder fans felt after losing to the Mavericks.  Dallas made all the little plays, and OKC kept missing on them. Those discrepancies build up, and the next thing you know the players watching the game on their flat screen instead of court-side.

Mo Cheeks in Running for Toronto Job | NewsOK

Assistant coach Mo Cheeks, the unofficial tutor of Russell Westbrook, is in talks to possibly become the next head coach for the Raptors. I like Cheeks, but I've watched him as a head coach for a while, and I'm just not convinced he has the right make-up for that job. I think his real calling is what he's doing now - training up young point guards.

Wade, LeBron Impersonate "Sick Dirk" | Ball Don't Lie

In terms of throwaway signs of disrespect, this one ranks at about a 2 on the revenge-o-meter. I'm 100% confident that Nowitzki did not care at all. He knows he's a giant dork anyway.

Krstic a Big Part of Thunder History | NewsOK

Nenad Krstic, as you're probably aware, is heading back to Russia. Tramel writes that, even though he's becoming a fading memory, it is important to recognize his contribution to the franchise.


Apropos of nothing, this is the shot that Jason Terry hit to ice the game. Look at it - that shot is kind of ridiculous.