Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle could tell just by looking at the Oklahoma City Thunder's body language that the young team is ready to seize the moment and opportunity to rise to NBA prominence.
The Mavericks were the defending NBA champions before the Thunder completed a four-game sweep of them in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs on Saturday night. Carlisle said the Mavericks tried five or six coverage ideas against the Thunder's third best player James Harden, who torched Dallas for 29 points in the closeout victory.
There was little that could be done.
"They have a certain look in their eye," Carlisle said of Oklahoma City. "Not just that they belong, but that this could be their time."
Read more about the Thunder at Welcome To Loud City. For more news on the Mavericks, check out Mavs Moneyball. Stay updated on any additional news and notes around the league at the SB Nation NBA hub page.