It certainly wasn’t unexpected given the trajectory of the first three games, but the fact and fashion of the Mavericks sweeping the Lakers hasn’t fully settled for me. A chunk of today was spent reading recaps, and it became clear that I’m not the only one who hasn’t quite found a schema for understanding what transpired. People are certainly grasping at straws, but somewhere down the road they may find themselves left simply with a fistful of air. I’m a notoriously poor straw-grasper, so I tried to find another way to capture what I’d seen. These graphs are the result.
After Games 1 and 2, Ben Golliver of Eye on Basketball pointed out the terrific scoring punch the Mavs’ were getting from their bench. That second unit didn’t just out score the Lakers, it thoroughly outplayed them:
Things got a little chippy towards the end of Game 4. Those fouls were a manifestation of immense frustration at the inability to stop the Mavericks:
The Mavericks’ shooting performance in this series was remarkable. Lax Lakers defense certainly helped, but they were converting at a remarkable clip:
Lamar Odom won the NBA’s 6th Man Award for the regular season. Jason Terry seemed to take offense at being overlooked:
Until the words come — assuming they will — for me to explain the stunning turn of events which has led to the Mavericks back to the Western Conference Finals, these graphs will have to do.