Final Score: Dallas 104, New Orleans 100
New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) - Dirk Nowitzki registered 25 points and
seven rebounds, leading the Dallas Mavericks to a 104-100 win over the New
Orleans Hornets on Friday.
Nowitzki was 10-of-17 from the field for the Mavericks, who have won three
straight games. Vince Carter recorded 22 points and nine rebounds off the
bench and Elton Brand added 13 points.
"It was as big as it gets," said Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle. "Down
four with a minute to go, the great thing was no one ever wavered or lost
belief. The guys kept battling."
Eric Gordon and Jason Smith scored 23 and 22 points, respectively, for the
Hornets, who have lost three straight games. Ryan Anderson recorded a double-
double with 20 points and 12 rebounds, as did Anthony Davis, who had 10 points
and 11 rebounds.
"Any time you lose a game you feel bad, but any time you lose a game that way
because of your mistakes, it's worse," said Hornets head coach Monty Williams.
"They hit some tough shots, but a lot of it was defensive breakdowns."
Davis left the game in the third quarter with a sprained right knee. He would
return to the bench in the fourth and was available to return, but stayed on
the bench for the remainder of the game.
"I came down on it and it started hurting, and I came to the back," said
Davis. "It's a sprained knee, whatever they told you that's what it was. I was
prepared to play if they needed me. It's fine."
Tied at 94-94 with 4:43 remaining in regulation, Smith made a free throw and
followed it up with a 14-foot jumper to give the Hornets a 97-94 edge.
With less than three minutes left, Nowitzki made a jumper to get Dallas within
one, 97-96. However, Anderson made a 3-pointer to give the Hornets a 100-96
After a Mavericks timeout, Mike James answered back with a 3-pointer of his
own to get Dallas within one again, 100-99, with 42 seconds to go.
Greivis Vasquez missed a 15-foot jumper on the ensuing New Orleans possession,
and Nowitzki came down with the defensive rebound.
With six seconds remaining, Carter made a 3-pointer to give the Mavericks the
"I just tried to read the situation, see if a guy was open and try to find
somebody," said Carter. "He was backing up in the retreat position. You can't
be afraid to shoot it. If you feel confident in your shot, go ahead and shoot
it. I know when it feels good. I've been around. I've been in many situations
where I've taken the game winning shot and missed it. I've been in situations
where I've hit big shots for our team. I've never been afraid to take a big
shot and deal with the consequences either way. In that situation, I feel
Darren Collison then drew a foul on Vasquez and made both of his free throws
with three seconds left to put the game out of reach.
Down 58-53 after the first half, the Mavericks opened up the third quarter
with a 6-0 run, capped off by a 3-pointer by Nowitzki to take a 59-58 lead
with 10 1/2 minutes left.
Smith took back the lead for the Hornets with a 17-footer before Nowitzki made
a layup to give Dallas a 61-60 edge with 8:49 remaining.
However, a three-point play by Gordon started a 7-0 run for New Orleans to
take a 67-61 lead with just under seven minutes remaining in the third
Dallas responded with a 11-4 run of its own, capped by a dunk from Shawn
Marion, and regained the lead, 72-71, with 3:46 remaining.
Al-Farouq Aminu made a free throw to tie the game, but Dallas held an 83-79
advantage entering the fourth.
Carter was 5-of-7 from behind the arc ... Dallas has scored 100-plus points in
16 of its last 18 games.
02/23 00:06:27 ET
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