Mavericks fans received the news they feared over the weekend, as the NBA announced that Danny Crawford will be the lead referee in Game 3 of the 2011 NBA Finals Sunday night. Crawford will be joined by Scott Foster, Derrick Stafford and alternate Jason Phillips.
The Mavericks’ history with Crawford is well chronicled, as Dallas had been 2-16 in playoff games officiated by him entering this postseason. Using the same proof of results, Crawford could actually be considered a good luck charm this postseason, as he called pivotal games in the Mavs’ first round series with the Blazers and the conference finals with the Thunder.
Dallas won Game 2 of the Portland series 101-89 and won the fourth quarter of that game 28-17. They won Game 4 of the OKC series in comeback fashion and won 112-105 in OT. Those results would seem to ease concerns of suspicious Mavericks fans who still remember Games 3 & 6 of the 2006 Finals when Dwyane Wade shot 39 free throws in the two contests, almost as many as the entire Mavericks team.