Sunday, March 16, 2008

West is getting tighter

MIAMI – Outside of the Western Conference’s top eight completely flipping positions from now until the end of the regular season, anything can happen. Actually, that’s not out of the realm of possibility.

Don’t bet on the standings you see today being the ones you see next Sunday. The West is fluid, but teams aren’t separating from the pack. If anything, it’s getting closer. The Mavericks began Sunday at seventh, but could easily be at or near the top of the conference with a solid week.

“There’s a possibility the top four teams can all be separated by one game,” Avery Johnson said before facing the Heat. “I think it may come down to the last game of the season because you’re going to see some shifting and changing at the top of the West probably in the next week.”

Jason Terry doesn’t even bother checking the standings with any regularity.

“Not anymore,” he said. “It changes every two days. It’s unbelievable. It’s going to change again today, I guess. You’ve just got to keep grinding out the wins.”

The Mavs have a golden opportunity to gain ground and gauge their progress with the next three games at American Airlines Center. The Los Angeles Lakers visit Tuesday, Boston on Thursday and San Antonio next Sunday.

Read the rest of this story in Mavs-Heat notes at

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