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Thursday, February 24, 2011
Jet can't help himself, goes Ali on Spurs

By Jeff Caplan

DALLAS -- Two days after saying the the Dallas Mavericks will catch the San Antonio Spurs one way or another, whether it be in the regular season or postseason, Jason Terry, a man who turns a quote with the ease of tossing a 3-ball, took the Spurs-Mavs rivalry a step further after Thursday's practice.

Let's turn the floor over to Jet:

"For me, it wasn't necessarily catching them now. We'd much rather catch them in the Western Conference finals and then go onto the championship. Like I said, we're going to catch them sooner or later. It's definitely got to come to that. How we finished last year, us and them, they knocked us out. The year before we knocked them out, so this is it. This is like Thrilla in Manila Part III. The Trilogy, so to speak.

"But, they got the rings, we don't. We're still little brother to them, so it's definitely a rivalry. We're watching their score and I know they're watching ours."

Both clubs started the post-All-Star-break portion of the schedule Wednesday night. The Mavs took care of the Utah Jazz, 118-99, and the Spurs closed out the Oklahoma City Thunder in an exciting game, 109-105. San Antonio improved to a league-best 47-10, while the Mavs, winners of 14 of their last 15, are now 41-16, six full games behind the Spurs with 25 to play.

Knowing the long odds of actually catching the Spurs in the regular season, Terry dropped the hyperbole and got serious: "More importantly than chasing them is us playing consistently on both ends of the floor, getting steady bench production and when we're up 10 or 15 like you saw last night, we're going to push it to 20 and get these guys out of here. We struggled with that the first half of the season, but for us to get better and to go where we want to go, we're going to have to put teams away, get our guys rest and be ready to go."