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Nowitzki Lights Up Thunder With 48 Points In Game 1 – SportsUntapped.com
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Added May 19th, 2011 by Ryan

Nowitzki Lights Up Thunder With 48 Points In Game 1
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The Dallas Mavericks have been waiting for quite some time to get underway in the Western Conference Finals after sweeping the two-time defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers in the second round of the playoffs, but despite having what could be considered too much time to rest, Dirk Nowitzki and company were still red-hot in Game 1 against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The one thing people were talking about heading into the Western Conference Finals was the age of the Dallas Mavericks and the youth of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Even though the Thunder are a very young and inexperienced team, they have quickly become one of the best all-around teams in the league with two-time NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant leading the way.

There is no question that the Thunder are a very talented team with a bright future, but whether or not they could win now and contend for a title remained to be seen. After Game 1, Thunder head coach Scott Brooks will need to go back to the drawing board to figure out how to contain Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavs’ bench.

In the second round of the playoffs, Kobe Bryant and company really struggled against the Mavs’ bench and had problems with Nowitzki throughout the series. With players like Jason Terry and J.J. Barea coming off the bench and lighting up the scoreboard, the Lakers stood no chance against the Mavs and were swept in convincing fashion.

In Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, the Dallas Mavericks were able to stay red-hot with Dirk Nowitzki scoring 48 points (including an NBA record 24-for-24 from the free throw line), Jason Terry adding 24 points and J.J. Barea dropping 21 off the bench. These three players seem to be the key to success for the Dallas Mavericks as they are near unstoppable when all three are playing at the top of their game.

Kevin Durant did all he could to stop the bleeding in Game 1 with a team-high 40 points, but it just wasn’t enough to top Dirk Nowitzki and his bench mob. Russell Westbrook was thought to be a thorn in the side of the Mavs in this series due to his speed and scoring ability out of the backcourt, but the young point guard was pretty ineffective with 20 points on 3-of-15 shooting.

Needless to say, the Dallas Mavericks haven’t cooled off just yet,  but they will have their work cut out for them moving forward as the Oklahoma City Thunder could have easily gotten back into this game despite the final score, 121-112.

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