Honestly, I did not expect that much from this DVD. I was under the impression this would be a "rushed to DVD" release filled with your typical sloppy editing and slapped on commentary. Or worse, simply a retread of previous pieces that were also hastily compiled and put together by the NBA in their efforts to capitalize on timing of the release after the Finals while keeping production costs down. However, I must say I was pleasantly surprised. Obviously, the DVD is 90% compiled of game footage but this is to be expected. I would have preferred a little more interview time with the players and coaches but I understand the meat of this DVD is reliving the 2011 Mavs Finals run and gameplay and not a 60 Minutes piece on the characters involved. That being said, the production was very well done and for the 10% of time spent on dedicated player interviews and commentary I must say that 10% is great. For any Mavericks fan wanting to recapture the feelings they had (ups and downs) of the Mavs 2011 run this is a great dvd to own.
I really appreciated the time they spent on the Mavs backstory and struggles between Game 5 and Game 6 of the Finals on this dvd. Just when you think they are rushing thru the Heat/Mavs series there is pause. At this time there is a good 10+ minutes dedicated to the buildup of the Mavs franchise and all the heartache and turmoil that accompanied them prior to moving on to Game 6 in the film. They really took the time in such an appropriate manner in the dvd to set the stage for the Game 6 victory which I felt was a good choice.
I also felt that the due diligence on the previous playoff series prior to playing the Heat paid off nicely. When I first saw that this dvd was only 70 minutes long I was disappointed as feared they would spend 10 minutes on the intro and regular season, perhaps another 20 on the playoff run and dedicate the remaining time on the Championship series. Not the case. Not the case in such a fact that as I watched it I began to fear that the Heat Series would be only 10 minutes long! Each of the playoff series were given their due, which was greatly appreciated.
As discerning Mavs fan I do have my grievances with this dvd, however. They are not major and in no way would I hope they dissuade any interested party from purchasing this dvd. Regardless, I have to clear my conscious by airing them. As a Dallas resident and life long Dallas Mavs fan, I feel the dvd did not spend enough time on the impact of the Game 4 loss to the Trailblazers in the first series. Yes, they did touch upon the relevance of it to some extent. However, this particular game set the tone for the remaining playoff run as the Mavs found a new identity by casting out all demons that labored the franchise from the last 8+ years as a result of this loss. As a lifelong Mavs fan who used to buy $15 nose bleed tickets when I was 15 yeas old in the early to mid 90s all the way to having the blessings of suite and floor seats into recent years, I along with all hard core Mavs fan, know the curse that has held the Mavs back from excellence.
That curse was the fact that our team beat themselves by not being resilient, aggressive, tough, and persistent enough to win when it mattered. The loss to the Trailblazers in Game 4 at the hands of Brandon Roy was the last ugly show of that curse in a long and heartbreaking run of bad beats the Mavs endured in the playoffs (read: every playoff run since 2006). This loss was the catalyst that propelled the Mavs to the Championship in my opinion. Without the humbling and embarrassing nature of this loss that resurrected all of the demons once again that plagued this franchise at this time there would be no 2011 Mavs Championship. From this loss, the Mavs knew without a shadow of a doubt that there was 48 minutes of basketball to be played and they would never take that for granted again (read: at least 3 Mavs comeback victories in the 4th quarter rest of playoff run to their Championship). So, I guess I just wish more time was spent on this aspect. I understand the time constraints but it would have been nice none the less.
Next grievance: I wish they would have spent more time on the complete arrogance of Dwayne Wade and Lebron James in this series. Obviously, I understand this is a NBA production so they can't ruffle too may feathers, especially those feathers that belong to two of their biggest stars but seriously....it needed to be spotlighted. What other franchise in NBA history has a pre-season rally that portrays their 3 star players as Gods other than Miami in 2010? [...] Last I checked you need 5 players to field a basketball court. And when did you think it was funny to make fun of a guy who owned you the whole series? [...]. Oh, how did that work out for you?
My only only other grievance is the special features. I mean, why bother. There are about 5 special feature vignettes and only one is worth anything. The one that is worth watching, and the one I was most pleasantly surprised at it being included, is simply the Game 2 comeback against the Heat. It is the replay in it's entirety of the last 7 minutes of Game 2 in Miami where the Mavs go on a 17-2 run to beat the Heat. I loved it. Kudos to whoever decided this would be a good edition to the dvd as clearly they were a Mavs fan. And in the end....isn't this who this dvd is made for? As for the remaining special features, when you only give us approximately 2 minutes of a feature do you not think this could have been just shoehorned into the feature presentation itself? Clearly these pieces are "cutting room floor" material. How am I to assume otherwise due to the amount of time you give us with it??
I was really excited at the beginning of 2 of these special features (a breakdown of Dirk's fadeaway and ason Kidd's court vision) but when they ended abruptly after less than 3 minutes I was left sitting there annoyed they were even put out there. What's even more frustrating is they had interviews from current NBA players breaking down Dirk and Jason's awesomeness which I felt was fantastic.....and then it's over in less than 3 minutes. I would have rather you not even teased me and just left that out in that case.
Overall, buy this dvd if you are a Mavs fan...or you live in Ohio....or you hate the Heat (ie: you live in Ohio). The Mavs played with character, poise, and played as a TEAM. Perhaps LeBron, Wade and Bosh will eventually figure out that a Team means more than conspiring to hang out in South Beach together because everyone tells them they are God's gift. Or maybe they should just watch this dvd and realize what a TEAM is.....but I doubt it.