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Kidd assisted on all nine Dallas baskets in the third quarter and scored five points as the Mavericks pushed a six-point halftime advantage to 80-67.
Seven of Kidd's assists resulted in layups or dunks, helping Dallas convert 16-of-22 shots near the basket.
Kidd also assisted on nine of Dirk Nowitzki's 11 buckets, including four during a two-minute span in the third period.
Kidd talked about the game here:
Plus/Minus traditionally loves it some Jason Kidd, and it's not hard to see why. Even at his advanced age, Kidd does just about everything you could ask of a guard at both ends (except stay with smaller, quicker PGs)... He distributes as well as anybody not named "Nash", "Paul", "Williams" or "Rondo"; he continues to rebound the ball at a high level; he's suddenly a deadly outside shooter; he can defend SGs or big PGs effectively; and he generally makes the Mavs a lot better when he's on the floor. People scoffed when Wayne Winston's +/- system said Kidd was one of the highest-impact players in the game, but I'm not so sure that was such a crazy idea after all.
As cyber-ballers from the 1990s know, pinning down Michael Jordan is no easy task for an NBA video game. After 1992, when Jordan signed a licensing agreement independent of the Players' Association, he rarely appeared in virtual form, only lending his likeness to 1994's Chaos in the Windy City, NBA Live 2000, NBA Street, and 2K/Live during his Wizards comeback. For most of Jordan's prime, his Bulls were led on the video hardcourt by Scottie Pippen and/or "Roster Player #89", a fictional MJ doppelganger who took #23's place on Chicago's roster.
All of that changes with NBA 2K11. In it, 2K Sports brings vintage basketball back to life with the Jordan Challenge, a game mode that allows players to relive 10 of Mike's most memorable games, including his coming-out party against Boston in the '86 playoffs and the Flu Game in '97. The rosters of the teams involved -- well, the starting lineups at least -- are faithfully re-created, so you'll find Larry Bird, Patrick Ewing, Karl Malone, and co. just as they were when they crossed MJ's path (complete with accurate abilities & animations). In fact, the first time you start the game, you're immediately dropped into Chicago Stadium for Game 1 of the 1991 Finals against Magic Johnson's Lakers -- a highly memorable experience, and one unlike any other you'll find in a sports video game.
I was watching a little of the Hawks-Grizzlies game last night before the World Series, and it sunk in just how much we've all written off the Hawks after last season's embarrassing sweep at the hands of the Magic. The prevailing logic is that Atlanta will still win their 45-50 games this year, finish with a decent seed in the East, and maybe even win another 1st-round series, but the sweep meant that they cannot truly contend with the conference's big guns.
Is one playoff sweep really that telling, though?
Here's the historical progression of all teams who were swept 4-0 from 1959-2007 (mouse over column headers for descriptions):
Record: 26-56, Finished 5th in NBA Southeast Division SRS: -4.72 (26th of 30) ▪ Pace: 91.6 (21st of 30) Off Rtg: 104.2 (25th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 109.4 (18th of 30) Expected W-L: 28-54 (26th of 30)
Record: 59-23, Finished 1st in NBA Southeast Division SRS: 7.12 (1st of 30) ▪ Pace: 92.0 (18th of 30) Off Rtg: 111.4 (4th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 103.3 (3rd of 30) Expected W-L: 61-21 (1st of 30)
Record: 53-29, Finished 1st in NBA Northwest Division SRS: 4.15 (8th of 30) ▪ Pace: 94.8 (5th of 30) Off Rtg: 111.8 (3rd of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 107.5 (16th of 30) Expected W-L: 52-30 (8th of 30)
Record: 26-56, Finished 4th in NBA Pacific Division SRS: -3.27 (22nd of 30) ▪ Pace: 100.4 (1st of 30) Off Rtg: 108.1 (14th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 111.7 (29th of 30) Expected W-L: 32-50 (22nd of 30)
Record: 61-21, Finished 1st in NBA Central Division SRS: 6.17 (2nd of 30) ▪ Pace: 91.4 (25th of 30) Off Rtg: 111.2 (6th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 104.1 (7th of 30) Expected W-L: 59-23 (2nd of 30)
Record: 40-42, Finished 4th in NBA Southwest Division SRS: -1.38 (17th of 30) ▪ Pace: 93.6 (10th of 30) Off Rtg: 108.3 (13th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 109.9 (19th of 30) Expected W-L: 37-45 (17th of 30)
Record: 50-32, Finished 1st in NBA Atlantic Division SRS: 3.37 (10th of 30) ▪ Pace: 91.6 (22nd of 30) Off Rtg: 107.7 (15th of 30) ▪ Def Rtg: 103.8 (5th of 30) Expected W-L: 52-30 (9th of 30)