Well we've slept on it, and it still sucks. The Dallas Mavericks
caught a break and a half on their final visit to Los Angeles -- Bryant out with a shin injury, Bynum playing with a chest cold. Spearheaded by Delonte West's 16 first half points, the Mavs were up by six at the half. The bad guys rallied to tie and Dirk's hero-heave at the buzzer caught iron and flicked away -- overtime. In the final seconds of OT with the Lakers up by two, Terry drove to the basket, went for the layup, and hit the underside of the rim. Two more Laker free-throws and there's your final, 112-108.
The Game In Brief ...
"We didn't as a team collectively make enough plays throughout the ball game. Usually when the shot clock is winding down, those balls don't go in. For some reason or another, this season they have. It was a big game. All of these games have tremendous meaning for us." -Jason Terry
"We fought. You have to give them credit. They made some great plays. They got some lucky bounces especially in overtime. We had our chances I thought in the end of regulation. Sometimes it just doesn't happen your way." - Dirk Nowitzki
"It's a disappointing loss because we were in control. We had a chance to put them away. You get up by 10, you're supposed to go ahead and stick it to them. But we didn't." -Shawn Marion
"That was one heck of a game ... First thing we did defensively, you know, Dallas is a very good offensive team and they shoot the ball very well, and they spread you out very well, and Rick [Carlisle] does a great job of mixing the sets and playing to the team's strengths. They hit a lot of threes, they hit threes early on, they hit some shots in transitions because our transition defense wasn't good. I thought our guys just stayed composed, they still tried to continue to execute at the tempo that we want them to." -Coach Mike Brown
The helping hands on Gasol's three in OT -- insert obscene language and gestures of preference ...
"It was a goaltend that was missed, an offensive goaltend. We had a one-point lead at that time, so it's a big play ... They'll see that in black and white in New York. It's clear on video. It's a missed offensive interference call and we should have retained a one-point lead at that point." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"I don't really know what happened. It looked like he touched the ball to me, but you never know. Everything goes so quick, and they counted it as a three, so that was a tough one." -Dirk Nowitzki
To be fair to the refs, basket interference isn't a reviewable call. Yet ...
"Not now they can't, but that's what I'm asking them to do. In other words, you've got to make it reviewable -- it's not reviewable now. You've got to ask them to change the rule so a basket interference becomes reviewable in the last two minutes of a game and in overtime." -Mark Cuban
Bright spot for those looking -- Delonte West ...
"Delonte being out five or six weeks really hurt us. You've seen what he can do coming off screen-and-rolls. I think that gives us another scorer, another option, and he was phenomenal tonight." -Dirk Nowitzki
Very big dark spot -- Dirk's head-hurtingly inefficient 9-28 afternoon ...
"My fourth shot was an airball out of the corner where I was wide open ... I've just got to make some shots. Tonight I was more of a volume shooter and that's not how I want to play. I want to be an efficient scorer, so I got some work to do. The good thing is before the playoffs we only have one game and we have four days off where I can work on my game and hopefully be right when the playoffs start." -Dirk Nowitzki
"He had some looks. Some were well defended, some were wide open and didn't go in. I think we did a pretty good job as a team covering him." -Pau Gasol
"He had some opportunities that he missed. We have got to get him some better looks. 9 for 28 is not a Dirk Nowitzki night." -Coach Rick Carlisle
Few things in life more embarassing -- on Jason's Terry's Rim Rocker In The Wrong Direction ...
"Just misread the whole play. You can't do that. I got caught under the basket. I saw a clear lane to the basket. There was some misfortune there not going strong enough to the basket. Barnes did an excellent job of getting out of the way. I thought he was going to try to take a charge or go for a hard foul and he did neither. Give him credit and I'll take the blame for that one. I command and ask for the ball in that situation, and to not be able to deliver for the team is an utter disappointment. Give Barnes credit, it was a savvy defensive play, but if I do it again, I know what kind of play I'm going to make." -Jason Terry
"Terry always likes to put his leg out and kick you and then go a little higher and get the and-one, so I kind of moved inside and just tried to block it and he just ran out of real estate." -Matt Barnes
"It was a pick and roll with Dirk and Terry and we need to make play. So he drove and I haven't seen the replay of it, but it didn't work out, so that's disappointing." -Coach Rick Carlisle
Sigh, Andrew [bleep]ing Bynum ...
"We had him one for eight in the first quarter; that was a good sign. Then as the game wore on we didn't do as good a job. We have got to do better. He didn't have a lot of free looks. He threw in a lot of shots with guys draped on him and we did make some mistakes ... Andrew Bynum is a great inside player so he affects the game a lot of different ways. He checks the game when you got a double team, he kicks it out and now brings threes and rebounding on the court." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"He's definitely a good player, but like you saw tonight, he got 24 shots. When you get that many shots, it puts you in a position to have a lot of good nights, a lot of opportunities. His game has come a long way. He's a tough matchup for anybody. Again, he's developed, he's gotten better and better every year ... What can you say? If we play him we're going to play him tough. I hope he goes 9-for-24." -Brendan Haywood
How come the Wrighteous Dude only played eight and a half minutes?
"He's a little light in the pants. Bynum's got him by about 40 pounds." -Dirk Nowitzki
More punishment on the boards -- LAL 52 (including 15 offensive), DAL 42 ...
"18 to 9, it's a big factor. But, these guys are the best rebounding team in basketball right now and we knew that coming in to the game. We did a good job on the boards last time we played them and this time they got the better of us. We played some smaller lineups today too, which can contribute to the challenges." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"They're tough. I think they're number one in the league. They've got a bunch of big guys. Gasol is obviously long, Artest is coming every time, and Barnes is a great offensive rebounder, so they've got basically four guys coming in there every time. We played some small ball with West, Kidd, and Jet and obviously that's not a great rebounding lineup ... If we don't get pounded by 20 on the glass, I think we have a chance." -Dirk Nowitzki
About the series sweep ...
"We still have that bitter taste in our mouth. We'll definitely take a sweep in the playoffs over a sweep in the regular season, so we know these games don't really mean too much because if we get a chance to see them in the playoffs, that's when it matters." -Matt Barnes
So now what?
"We're going day to day here and we're trying to earn our way in to the playoffs. We'll worry about matchups later. We have got to be playing our best basketball. We did a lot of really good things today and our shot making wasn't there the way it needed to be. But, we have got to stay the course. If we get in, then whoever we play we play ... We've gotta pack up and get ready for the next game. It's as simple as that." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"We need to maintain our level of play right now and get into the playoffs as the sixth seed. Consistently we're coming out and giving a great effort. We're fighting on both ends of the floor. Tonight was a big disappointment but you have to get over it quick because we've got Utah tomorrow." -Jason Terry
"Right now we're just trying to close the season out. We're not going to worry about the postseason until it gets here." - Shawn Marion