Shawn Marion had another strong NBA Finals game on both ends of the floor Tuesday night.
The Mavericks forward scored 16 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the field in 25 minutes. He was also part of a contingent of players who put the clamps on Miami Heat forward LeBron James, who scored a playoff career-low eight points in the Mavericks 86-83 victory. James had scored in double figures in 89 consecutive playoff games prior to Tuesday.
Marion missed all but 12 seconds of the fourth quarter in what he described as a "coach's decision." Marion did get kicked in the left calf toward the end of the third quarter. He played 10 minutes of the third and scored 10 points but said he didn't know who kicked him.
In the fourth quarter, Marion was standing in the huddle with his warmups on and his calf wrapped in ice. He was put in the game for defensive purposes when the Heat were setting up for a last-second shot.
Asked whether his playing time was limited by health or Rick Carlisle, Marion said that it was a coach's decision.
"I think it was a matter of how the flow of the game was going and that’s what happens," he said.
Marion said he wasn't happy about sitting but isn't making any waves because his team tied the best-of-7 series at two games each.
"We pulled it out and that’s what it is," he said. "I'm a competitor and I feel like I want to play 48 minutes a night. He cut my minutes down, it’s OK, we pulled out a good win and that’s all that matters."
Before the game, Carlisle said he wanted to cut Marion's minutes -- he had played 25 after three quarters of Game 4. But when he got kicked and with the Mavs doing well offensively without him, it appeared Carlisle wanted to stick with the unit he had on the floor.
Marion did some positive things when he was on the floor. His best move of the night came when he beat James off the dribble and scored on a running hook shot.
While the Mavericks might be a veteran team, Marion likes to say he's athletic and deserves to be called by his nickname, "The Matrix."
"I'm just attacking them," Marion said. "I’m doing what I do, and I get buckets if I get the opportunity to. At the same time, I'm just being aggressive and my teammates are looking for me."
As for the calf, Marion said it's fine. "I’m walking. I’m good."