NBA Game Summary - Dallas at Toronto
(Sunday, January 14th)
Final Score: Dallas 97, Toronto 96
Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Josh Howard's layup with under one second remaining on the clock lifted the Dallas Mavericks over the Toronto Raptors, 97-96.
Dirk Nowitzki paced Dallas with 38 points and 11 rebounds, while Jason Terry had 17 points as the Mavericks won their fourth straight game.
"We came out flat, we couldn't make shots," said Nowitzki. "We were in a dog fight. Give (Toronto) credit. They play like Phoenix. They have a lot of shooters."
Chris Bosh had 24 points and 15 rebounds for the Raptors, who led by as many as 16 in the game and had won their last two contests. T.J. Ford donated 16 points and eight assists in defeat and Anthony Parker added 14 points.
With the win, Dallas claimed victory for the 17th time in their last 18 games. However, it didn't come easy. In fact, the Mavericks never led by more than a point in the contest.
Down by six heading into the fourth frame, two Nowitzki free throws early in the fourth pulled Dallas to within 81-79, but Morris Peterson answered with a three just moments later.
Consecutive buckets for Toronto upped its lead to six at 90-84, but Terry came back with a trey to cut it to three with 5:26 remaining. Terry knocked five treys overall in the game.
The clubs went cold from the floor for the next two minutes, until Dallas netted two straight baskets to go in front. Devean George made it a one-point game with a finger roll, and Nowitzki's jumper with 2:56 left put the Mavericks ahead 91-90.
Ford quickly answered with a jumper to put the Raptors back in front, and Nowitzki picked up an offensive foul and then a technical on the other end. Parker missed the free throw, but Bosh was fouled on the resulting possession. He hit both shots from the charity stripe to make it a 94-91 contest with 2:10 on the clock.
Nowitzki answered with a driving dunk to again make it a one-point contest with under two minutes to play.
"We're learning to close out games going down the stretch," Nowitzki said.
Ford's layup gave Toronto a 96-93 lead, and the guard came up with a steal at the other end. However, his resulting jumper was no good and Dallas pushed the ball up the floor before calling timeout with 37 ticks left.
Out of the break, Devin Harris drove the lane and was fouled by Ford and he hit both free throws for a 96-95 contest with 34.4 seconds remaining.
After calling a timeout themselves, the Raptors worked the ball to Ford, who's en suing jumper rimmed out. The teams scrambled for the rebound, resulting in a jump ball with 11.2 seconds left.
Nothing was settled after the first try, as both teams got a handle on the ball, resulting in a second jump ball. Dallas came away with attempt number two, and called a timeout with 6.5 seconds.
Off the inbounds, Terry then found Howard all alone underneath and he easily laid it in with .9 ticks left.
"It was just something the coach drew up," said Howard. "Two defenders went to Erick (Dampier) and I went to the basket."
Parker's try at the horn for Toronto was no good.
Howard ended the game with 10 points for Dallas, which trailed 32-22 after the first and 59-48 at the break.
Andrea Bargnani had 12 points off the bench for the Raptors, while Peterson ended with 11...Howard had eight rebounds...Toronto shot 48.6 percent from the floor to Dallas' 40.2 percent, but hit three less shots from behind the arc...The Raptors lost for just the second time in six games.
01/14 16:25:21 ET