Dirk Nowitzki is representative of the collective emotions of the Mavericks. And after two games and two hard-luck losses in Oklahoma, he's not going to try to mask the fact that this is a team that has been staggered by the Thunder so far.

"It's tough,'' Nowitzki said in his postgame news conference. "Really, all four games we had here, two in the regular season and two in playoffs, we're right there. We're really just a couple bounces away from being up 2-0. So it's tough. It's frustrating.''

But it is not so depressing that the Mavericks are throwing up their hands and feeling like winning this best-of-seven series just isn't meant to be.