Miami 92, Mavs 84; Game 1 Finals Quoteboard
The Dallas Mavericks were in it all the way to the fourth quarter, but what's been winning time for the good guys turned into a march through pain. Miami didn't shoot it well, but managed 13 extra possessions and made six more shots, Dallas's defense folded under a steady barrage from the You Know Whos, and the MOBs were pretty much MIA. Final 92-84. What's worse, word's come down that Dirk ripped a tendon in his hand.
Of all the things we do not need (X-rays confirmed a torn tendon in the left hand, nothing broken) . . .
"Well, it was just a freaky play. Bosh got a bounce pass, I stepped in, thought I stripped him clean, and then I kind of looked down, I couldn't straighten my finger out anymore. So, I tore a tendon in there, but I guess it will be all right. I got to wear a splint, and probably for the rest of the playoffs for a couple weeks, but I'll be all right, it's on my left hand so I'll be alright for Thursday." -Dirk Nowitzki
"He's right-handed. It won't affect him. He's still going to be great. He's still Dirk." -LeBron James
Regarding defense -- Miami shot 39 percent, Dallas just 37 . . .
"They're a very good defensive team. It was tough to get shots all night. Both teams shot under 40 percent. That gives you some idea of how difficult good, clean shots are going to be to come by in this series." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"Well, again, that was a grind. It's tough. That's a very skilled offensive team. We didn't get into much of an offensive flow the entire game. This was more of probably a defensive battle." -Coach Erik Spoelstra
"I mean, you hold a team to 38 percent and 92 points, for us that's usually a victory. To score 84 points is very rare for us. To get 67 shots, even to shoot 37 percent. Most times we shoot 37 percent from the field, the other team is going to shoot lower than that. It was about equal, and we only were able to score 84 points." -Shawn Marion
"The name of the game is to put the ball in the basket and we just didn't do that tonight." -Jason Kidd
And the one stat that sticks out?
"They were aggressive on the rebounds. I thought we did a good job defensively of containing them and keeping them under control. But what we didn't do was secure the rebounds once we got a stop . . . We've got to clean up some things, do a better job on the glass. They came up with a couple of plays down the stretch that let them open up the game." -Tyson Chandler
"Our rebounding has to be better. We're minus-10 on offensive boards. That's 10 more opportunities that they have the ball and we don't . . . Our bigs have to be active, containing their great players on the perimeter, so it draws them away from the basket some. I'll look at the film." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"When you play zones, it's tough to find guys to box out. That's one thing about zones is when you're playing it, you're not matching up with anybody. You're just playing an area. We know that we can crash the boards. Anytime that we can get second-chance opportunities, it's gold for us." -Chris Bosh
"We've been rebounding in the zone all season long." -Brendan Haywood
On The UberMan, and his oddly un-UberManly 27 points . . .
"I had my opportunities there. I had some good drives there in the first half. I just got to finish. I missed a righty layup. I missed a lefty layup that rolled around. I have to keep attacking and take my opportunities when they're there. We know Haslem is a good defender at the four position, probably one of the best in the league. I still got my opportunities there when I put the ball on the floor. I just got to finish." -Dirk Nowitzki
"He's got to be denied the ball everywhere on the floor. Haslem is a guy that's got the wherewithal to do that. And they're going to play him aggressively and we know that. We've just got to keep playing our game. We have to keep getting him the ball and giving him opportunities to create." -Coach Rick Carlisle
Sigh -- about Those Guys, who combined for 46 points . . .
"They have two very good closers, two of the best in the game. I mean, Dwyane made some big shots there in the fourth quarter and LeBron has been shooting the ball really well this playoffs. They had some open looks and really made some tough shots." -Dirk Nowitzki
"I was able to get a few to go in. I was very confident. That's all it was. Confidence. And my teammates found me." -Dwayne Wade
"For me, going into the fourth quarter, it's winning time." -LeBron James
Dallas does still have a bench, right?
"I actually thought coming in that our bench was going to be a key for us. They did a good job there on Jet. I think Jet did a good job in the first half. Got to some areas to knock down some shots and second half they didn't really let him get an open look. LeBron was on him some in the fourth quarter, to go big on him, and I guess bother his shot. And JJ's got to take his time when gets in there. Obviously they are collapsing and trying to block his shot. I thought he was rushing some of his shots in the paint. And we've just got to relax, it it's not there, swing the ball to the weak side, because the shot is going to be there. We've just got to finish." -Dirk Nowitzki
"We had some good looks, some wide open 3-pointers and layups at the basket that we missed. Defensively, you hold them to 92 points, but offensively it was a disaster for us . . . but I guarantee you, if we get those same opportunities in Game 2, we're going to take advantage of them. We're very encouraged right now knowing that that if we continue to get those same opportunities we're going to have some success." -Jason Terry
"They did a good job throwing doubles, coming from the weak side on a double. Haslem played him tough, but if we made our shots, they couldn't do that. Dirk kept passing to us, and we weren't making shots. If we make shots, it makes it easier for Dirk." -DeShawn Stevenson
It's not over . . .
"We'll play better. I'm certain of that. Again, we had some opportunities . . . Shots we normally make, they didn't go down. And so, that was tough. But look, it's a long series, and we'll adjust and do things we need to do to get ourselves in a better position. This is a very good basketball team we're playing. They were more opportunistic tonight than we were. That's been one of the traits of our run. We've been very opportunistic. Tonight, we weren't as much." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"We're a veteran team. You can't get down with a loss. You've got to come back strong on Thursday. I've said it a couple times in this playoff run -- if you're the road team, you're happy with a split. So we've got another opportunity on Thursday to get one. Obviously, we don't want to go home down 0-2." -Dirk Nowitzki
"This team is mentally tough. We know to beat Miami, we're going to have to bring it." -Jason Terry