Over the next 48 hours, we're going to hear a lot about how the Mavericks lost tonight because they played at the Suns' "pace," and that they only need to use their "superior depth" to get them right back where they belong. I realize that all fans think that their team doesn't get enough credit, but my god, we smacked Dallas by 20 points tonight. They barely even played in the second half. And yes, they're ten deep, but when two of those ten are Erick Dampier and Keith Van Horn, you can't exactly call that an incontrovertible advantage. A lot of people didn't pick the Suns to beat the Lakers, even more didn't pick them to beat the Clippers, and virtually no one picked them to win the Western Conference Finals. Oh, but they will. This may be the only team in NBA history to win the Finals and be told that they didn't "deserve" the championship. If we can get past Dallas--and it's a sizable if, still, at this point--we will win the title.
As for Raja Bell, there's little more that can be said. The guy stood up to Kobe like everyone else in the NBA wishes they had the guts to do. He hit a game-tying shot when the Suns were facing a dying breath. And he came back from the dead tonight to play a fine, well-rounded, thuggish game. To add insult to the NBA nostalgia hounds' injury, who don't believe that a team built on speed and shooting can win the title, he didn't even say that his number 19 is a tribute to Willis Reed. Raja Bell wasn't born when Willis Reed took the floor at the Garden. What possible tribute could he pay? The man has had the most dramatic single postseason since Michael Jordan hung up his sacred jersey-shroud for the second time. Attention must be paid.
Also, Kurt Thomas creaked off the bench for five ineffective minutes. But let that be a warning to the rest of the NBA. Every time the Suns add another man to the rotation, you are all one step closer to your doom. These Suns are going to be your champions whether you want them to be or not.