Sunday, April 26, 2009

Mavs 99, Spurs 90: Helpful Hollins

When Erick Dampier went to the bench with 4 fouls, Rick Carlisle used a spark by the name of Ryan Hollins to ignite the Mavericks en route to a 99-90 win over San Antonio to give Dallas a 3-1 lead in the best-of-7 series.

Hollins not only grabbed 8 rebounds and blocked 3 shots, he also made plenty of small hustle plays to help give the Mavs a strong lead which they would not surrender.  With 3:34 left in the third quarter, Josh Howard dribbled from the wing into the lane where Hollins was boxing out Tim Duncan, providing a clear path for Howard to the basket.  Big dunk, and Dallas takes a 70-65 lead with plenty of momentum.

But perhaps Hollins' biggest momentum play of the night was his put-back jam with 4:20 left in the 4th quarter off a missed 3-point attempt by Jason Kidd.  Hollins sent the AAC into a frenzy with the thunder-dunk, and despite his over-the-top celebration earning a technical foul for San Antonio, the message was sent.  This was Dallas' game, and very realistically becoming Dallas' series.  

Dallas now has an opportunity to steal a game in San Antonio in Game 5 to close out the series early before their shot at winning at home in Game 6.  

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