Friday, November 14, 2008

Game 8, Dallas Mavericks visit Chicago Bulls

Theme: Combichrist, "What The Fcuk Is Wrong With You?"
Game Info: *click!*

DJ and Monster In Residence Joe Virus snuck that one in last night at The Church, and it perfectly sums up my feelings about this particular outing. Observe the annoyed fat lady aiming her yells at a point roughly a foot and a half over her head.

I didn't know this game was going to be televised; I missed the first quarter. Thank God, I didn't tape it.

And for the first time since I've been watching the Mavs, I'm completely okay with, God forgive me, blaming it on my guy. Bright one . . . what's wrong?

- In a sane universe, Dirk is a matchup nightmare, because he can either kill you from long range or take it in and layup. That's not happening. He is allowing himself to get hoodwinked into fast-feet contests with smaller guys and it's trashing his game. Doesn't help that he gets smacked around more often than not yet only draws a foul when he flops it.

- A bad shooting night is kind of like a bad hair day -- not fun but it happens. Once? I'll buy it. Twice? Well it was against the Lakers. Three times? Against the Chicago Bulls? There's something wrong.

- I might've said this before but it bears repeating. This is a very bad time for Dirk and his jump shot to fall out of love with each other. Woo it. Cherish it. Buy it flowers for Christ's sake!

- The big thing? And what scares me the most? Dirk's not a stupid man, he's got good instincts, he's a perennial All-Star and a goddamn MVP, for fuck's sake. Bad shot selection, letting himself get out-hustled, two turnovers . . . it indicates bad judgement on both ends of the floor. And that's not like him. Where're your brains, in your ass?

In The Wash: That uptempo offense? We're not seeing it. Controlling the pace of the game? We're not seeing that either. A proactive rather than reactive approach to posessions? Nada. Advantages to having a core group of veterens who've played together for a couple years now? Eeent.

What I'm wondering is this. The core of the team's been through a lot together. They're the best players to put on the navy and white. They've taken this franchise to the highest peak it's ever achieved -- Western Conference Champions.

The Organization have tried to preserve that core intact. There're a lot of reasons for doing so -- they work well together, they trust each other, their skill sets mix and match well, they create a good working environment. What I think Misters Cuban and Nelson were trying to do was shortcut the learning curve a little -- they weren't going for a blowup like I suggested way back in June, more like hitting the Reset button. All of which is designed to give Dirk the best working environment possible; he's our ace in the hole, best possible shot at a title.

The Organization either didn't realize, or chose to overlook, something. That same core -- Dirk, Jet, Dampier and Diop, Stack, J-Ho -- have also endured some truly low lows. Individually and as a group they've had to cope with more heartbreak than should be asked of anybody. Fault can be argued forever; the bottom line is they failed. Repeatedly, publicly, and in the most humiliating way possible.

Has the cumulative Murphy's Law Squared* sewage gotten too thick to swim through? If that's the case, then yes, the team needs to be broken up.

On this team, Dirk is God -- it all begins and ends with him. This had better be a dry spell (it happens) and not a sign of deeper problems. I don't doubt he can carry a team and anybody who does wasn't paying attention this summer when Germany made the Olympics. Dirk is clutch, he plays respectable defense, he's a tough motherfucker and the opposite of selfish. Whatever his malfunction, it needs to get fixed. The sooner the better.

Final: 98-91, Bulls

*if it can go wrong, it will make a specific point of going wrong, simply to inconvenience you

No comments: