Posted: Tuesday May 16, 2006 2:08AM; Updated: Tuesday May 16, 2006 2:08AM
SI.com's Marty Burns looks at the best and worst of the NBA Playoffs each night
Jason Terry, Mavericks
Another night, another Mavs point guard doing major damage. Terry had a team-high 32 points and made several clutch plays down the stretch as host Dallas pulled out a 123-118 OT thriller over San Antonio for a commanding 3-1 series lead. Using his quickness to get a step all night, the veteran sharpshooter hit 12-of-25 shots and dished five assists while logging 51 minutes. Terry was especially lethal down the stretch, sinking three big daggers and stripping Brent Barry for a key steal. Dirk Nowitzki (28 points) and Jerry Stackhouse (26) were terrific as well, but Terry led the way.
Rasheed Wallace, Pistons
If you're going to talk smack, you gotta back it up. After guaran'sheeding a victory, the fiery forward went out and produced just seven points and six rebounds in Game 4 as the Pistons lost again in Cleveland to fall into a 2-2 series tie. Hobbled by a sprained ankle suffered in the opening minutes, Wallace missed 10 of 13 shots, including both from 3-point range, while committing three turnovers. It was part of a dismal offensive showing for Detroit, which hit just 25-of-75 shots (33.3 percent) from the floor overall, 4-of-15 from downtown. Needless to say, 'Sheed heard about it from the fired-up crowd at the Q.
Stephen Dunn/NBAE via Getty Images
The Spurs made too many mistakes to deserve to win, but they didn't get any help from the refs. With Dallas trailing 111-109 with 15.4 seconds left, Nowitzki was bailed out on a questionable foul call as he tried to shed Bruce Bowen on a drive into the lane. Nowitzki wound up sinking both foul shots to tie the game with 8.5 seconds left. After the call, an angry Bowen reportedly went over to NBA commissioner David Stern seated courtside and said, "This is terrible!" The Spurs still had one final chance to win in regulation, but Tim Duncan's hook over Mavs center Erick Dampier clanged off the iron.
During the regular season, the Nets were the only NBA team to post two winning streaks of 10 or more games. Now they need to start a three-game win streak soon, or their season will be history. Down 3-1 to the Heat, New Jersey will be seeking to avoid elimination when it visits Miami for Tuesday night's Game 5 (8 p.m. EST/TNT). With Jason Kidd (right) to lead the way, the Nets won't go down without a fight. In the nightcap, the Clippers and Suns will break a 2-2 series tie when they meet up in a pivotal Game 5 in Phoenix (10:30 p.m./TNT).