NBA Christmas Day 2011: Mavs Begin Title Defense With 105-94 Loss To Miami

Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points but Dallas dropped its Christmas day match up with Miami 105-94

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Mavericks Vs. Heat Final Score: Dallas Drops Season Opener 105-94 To Miami

The old saying is that in the NBA every team makes a run. Miami spent much of the first three quarters on a run building as much as a 35 point lead in the process. Despite the commanding lead by the Heat, the fourth quarter belonged to the Mavericks as they outscored the Heat 29-8 over the final 12 minutes but even that wasn't enough to undo the damage of the first three quarters as Miami cruised to a 105-94 victory.

Dallas struggled to find space to work offensively against Miami's defense and then struggled even more in transition as the Heat pushed their way to 31 fast break points. The Mavs hit just 38 percent of their shots for the game. Jason Terry led Dallas with 23 points including four buckets from beyond-the-arc. Dirk Nowitzki added 21 points but finished 6-15 from the field. Shawn Marion chipped in 12 points while Delonte West ended with 10.

LeBron James had a huge opening day finishing with 37 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. James had his way with the Dallas defense going 11-19 from the floor and 15-19 from the free throw line. Dwyane Wade chipped in 26 points, eight rebounds and six assists. Udonis Haslem did the dirty work for Miami finishing with nine points and 14 rebounds off the bench.

For the latest news and notes on the defending NBA champions, check out Mavs Moneyball, and for more on the Heat, head on over to Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Mavericks Vs. Heat Score: Miami Pouring It On, Lead 97-65 After Three

Everything is going right for the Miami Heat and frustration is starting to mount for the Dallas Mavericks. After taking a 62-41 lead into the half, Miami outscored Dallas 35-24 in the third quarter to take a 97-65 lead into the fourth quarter.

The Heat are sizzling at both ends of the floor shooting over 57 percent as a team and have capitalized on every opportunity that they have created. LeBron James is having a big game with 33 points, eight rebounds and six assists through three quarters of play while running mate Dwyane Wade has 22 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

It has been all down hill for the Mavericks since they raised their championship banner prior to the game. Dirk Nowitzki has 21 points through three quarters but is just 6-15 from the floor. Jason Terry has 14 while Shawn Marion has 12 respectively. Lamar Odom was ejected in his Dallas debut mid-way through the third for arguing a charge call.

For the latest news and notes on the defending NBA champions, check out Mavs Moneyball, and for more on the Heat, head on over to Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Mavs Vs. Heat Score Update: Heat Stretch Lead To 21, Up 62-41 At Half

Be it because of their youth, continuity or desire to sour the Dallas Mavericks' first game at home since winning the 2011 NBA Championship, the Miami Heat dominated the Mavs in the first half of the teams' highly anticipated Christmas Day match up. The Heat opened the game with a 15-point first quarter lead, which they managed to extend to 21 at halftime, going into the locker room up 62-41.

To little surprise, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade starred for the Heat in the first half. James contributed 18 points, seven assists and three rebounds to pair with Wade's 14 points, five assists and five rebounds. The Heat also received a boost in the second quarter from James Jones, who was buried on the bench in last year's Finals, but dropped in three three-pointers in today's game.

The Mavs, meanwhile, continued to look rusty. After turning the ball over too many times in the first quarter, Dallas managed to hold on to the ball, but were still unable to hit shots or grab a rebound. The Heat outrebounded Dallas 28-13 in the first half, and held the Mavs to 29% shooting from the field. Dirk Nowitzki, who took two months off from basketball this offseason, looked especially out of sync, hitting only two of nine shots, though he did go 9-10 from the free throw line.

For the latest news and notes on the defending NBA champions, check out Mavs Moneyball, and for more on the Heat, head on over to Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Mavs Vs. Heat Score Update: Heat Dominate First Quarter, Lead 31-17

The Miami Heat looked crisper and sharper than the Dallas Mavericks in the first quarter of the teams' opening game, opening up a 32-17 lead that was capped off by a 21-6 run to end the quarter. The Heat were led in the quarter by LeBron James, who tallied a rather quiet 10 points on 3-6 shooting from the field and 4-5 from the line. Dwyane Wade added 7 points to go along with three rebounds and three assists.

The Mavs were outworked down low and sloppy on offense throughout the quarter. The Heat tallied 14 rebounds to Dallas' six, and added five steals and two blocks that led to 13 fast break points. The Mavs shot only 4-15 from the field, with Dirk Nowitzki going 1-4, although he did add four makes from the line.

For the latest news and notes on the defending NBA champions, check out Mavs Moneyball, and for more on the Heat, head on over to Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Mavs Vs. Heat: Time, TV Schedule, Radio Streaming And More

The Dallas Mavericks will get to celebrate their 2011 NBA Championship in their home arena for the first time on Sunday, but after that they'll face a stiff test from the team they defeated to claim that title. The Miami Heat certainly can't erase the pain and embarrassment of their Finals loss to the Mavs with a victory on Christmas Day, but they will nonetheless be trying their hardest to exact a little revenge on the road in Dallas.

The Heat will more or less look the same on Sunday; they've added Shane Battier, and will be folding in youngsters Norris Cole (at point guard) and Dexter Pittman (at center), but the team still revolves around the vaunted Big 3. The Mavs meanwhile will be replacing two major contributors, and folding new one into the line up. With Tyson Chandler moving on to the New York Knicks, the backbone of the Mavs' defense will need to be replaced, and for the time being that will fall on the shoulders of Brendon Haywood and Ian Mahinmi. The Mavs will also be without bench sparkplug J.J. Barea, who signed a free agent deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves in the off season. That scoring punch of the bench is expected to come from new acquisition Lamar Odom, who the Mavs received from the Los Angeles Lakers in a trade after the L.A.'s deal for Chris Paul involving Odom was nixed by David Stern.

Game date/time: Sunday, Dec. 25, 1:30 p.m. CT

Location: American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas

TV coverage: ABC

Radio coverage:

Mavs: ESPN 103.3 FM

Heat: WAXY 790 AM

Odds: Heat favored by 4.5

For the latest news and notes on the defending NBA champions, check out Mavs Moneyball, and for more on the Heat, head on over to Peninsula Is Mightier.

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Mavs Vs. Heat Odds: Dallas A Home Underdog In Finals Rematch

The Heat are favored to beat the Mavericks on Christmas Day.

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