Dallas Mavericks Return To NBA Finals Playing Team Basketball, Tough Defense

The Dallas Mavericks are headed back to the NBA Finals, with Game 5 vs. the Thunder just the latest improbable win propelling them deeper in the playoffs. But with all eyes on Dirk Nowitzki,, Dallas owes just as much to defense and team basketball.

So says SB Nation's Mavericks blog, Mavs Moneyball. Wednesday night's game was just a microcosm of what's worked all spring long. As Lisa Rotter writes, "the Mavericks decided to play team basketball, and started making better decisions with their passing. In addition, they followed shots and were able to get second chance points, including a resounding dunk from Shawn Marion." It's a formula that's been more successful than anyone could have expected. Dirk has been unreal, but that's been true for the past decade. It's guys like Shawn Marion and Jason Kidd that have been the difference for Dallas in 2011. 

Ultimately, Mavs Moneyball put it best, with just one word: "Legendary."

Say what you want about the Mavericks as individuals. Jason Kidd's old, Shawn Marion's inconsistent, Tyson Chandler's dirty, Jason Terry and Peja Stojakovic are streaky... Whatever. In the end, as a team, on both ends, they've put together a run that we'll remember for a long, long time. Legendary.

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