Mavs stand toe to toe with champs

Dallas has proved it's tough enough to have legitimate shot to stop Lakers, keep going

Updated: May 4, 2011, 9:25 AM ET
By Tim MacMahon | ESPNDallas.com

LOS ANGELES -- The Dallas Mavericks are who they thought they were. That gives them a chance to be what they want to be.

The Mavericks, long considered an NBA synonym for soft, have proved without a shadow of a doubt that they are indeed a bunch of thick-skinned, strong-minded veterans.

We skeptics have been forced to become believers after seeing this team respond to moments when previous Mavs teams would have shown their weakness.

"Oh, no, here we go again" was the vibe after ...

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