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NBA Finals, Mavericks Vs. Heat: Game 3

Game 3 of the 2011 NBA Finals is set for Sunday night as the Dallas Mavericks play host to the Miami Heat. The series, of course, is tied at a game a piece after Dallas' roaring comeback in Game 2, leaving many Heat fans and various NBA analysts stunned. 

On Sunday night, the Mavericks will look to take control of the NBA Finals and take a 2-1 series lead in Dallas. In order to do just that, Dallas will have to continue to hold LeBron James in check, as LeBron only scored 20 points in Game 2, on a paltry 8-15 shooting, including 2-7 from behind the arc. 

Dallas, as they vowed to do, also cleaned up on the boards in Game 2. In Miami's win in Game 1, the Heat outrebounded the Mavericks 46-36. In Dallas' Game 2 win, Dallas won the rebound battle 41-30, with superstar Dirk Nowitzki leading the Mavs with 11 boards.

As previously noted here on SB Nation Dallas, Game 3, historically, is pivotal. Since the NBA Finals switched to a 2-3-2 format, when the series is tied at a game a piece, the winner of Game 3 has won the NBA Finals 100% of the time. This has occurred on 11 occasions, most recently last year when the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Boston Celtics in seven games.

Luckily for the Mavericks and their fans, Dallas will be hosting Game 3 - where they're 7-1 in the playoffs thus far. The Heat, meanwhile, are only 4-3 on the road in the playoffs thus far, so the Mavericks have a great opportunity to hold home court and seize series control. 

Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. EDT, 7 p.m. CDT. Televised coverage can be found on ABC.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.