NBA Game Summary - Dallas at Memphis
(Friday, February 22nd)
Final Score: Dallas 98, Memphis 83
Memphis, TN (Sports Network) - Dirk Nowitzki scored 27 points and Jason Kidd dished out 15 assists in his second game since being acquired from New Jersey as the Dallas Mavericks dismantled the Memphis Grizzlies, 98-83, at FedExForum.
Jason Terry poured in 22 points for Dallas, which snapped a two-game losing streak and won its 11th straight over the Grizzlies. Josh Howard added 20 points and seven rebounds for the Mavs.
"More than anything, it really wasn't about playing against another team tonight as much as it was about us trying to figure out what works and some things we need to eliminate," said Dallas head coach Avery Johnson. "Like I said all along, we just need to practice, play some games and get more and more stuff on video so that we can continue in this process of trying to get this team headed in the right direction."
Kidd scored just two points, but added four steals and only committed two turnovers, a significant improvement over his eight point, five assist, six turnover effort in his return to the Mavericks lineup Wednesday at New Orleans.
"It�s about making the game as easy as possible and finding guys� sweet spots," Kidd said. "So they don't have to put it on the floor or adjust the ball and just catch it and shoot it. You saw that a lot tonight."
Rudy Gay led five Grizzlies in double figures with 18 points as Memphis dropped its fourth straight decision. Hakim Warrick added 15 points and nine boards, while Kyle Lowry came off the bench to contribute 12 points
Memphis was without the services of Mike Miller, who missed his second straight game with back spasms.
The Mavs led by as many as 26 early in the third before the Grizzlies finally began to cut into the margin. Trailing 78-56 with 3 1/2 minutes left in the stanza, Mike Conley hit a three to start off an 11-0 run that finished out the quarter, capped off by Brian Cardinal's hook shot at the buzzer to make the score 78-67 after three quarters.
Memphis cut the deficit to single digits early in the fourth, closing to within nine on Warrick's dunk less than 90 seconds into the frame. Memphis could not get closer, as Dallas answered with a basket every time the Grizzlies pulled within nine.
Leading 86-76 five minutes into the session, Terry drilled a three to push the lead back to 13, then Erick Dampier and Nowitzki threw down resounding dunks to give the Mavs a 93-76 edge with 4 1/2 minutes to play.
"Our defense stopped making plays and they started executing," Conley said. "When we made the run, we were getting steals, getting rebounds and really pushing the ball up the court and getting easy buckets."
Another Terry three capped the 10-0 run and extended the margin to 20 with 3:51 left. Memphis never challenged from that point as the Mavs won their eighth straight game in Memphis, dating back to November 2004.
Nowitzki scored 16 points in the first quarter as the Mavs used an 11-4 run to seize control at the midway point of the frame, and Dallas led 30-21 after the opening 12 minutes.
Dallas continued to pull away in the second quarter, going ahead by as many as 20 on Jerry Stackhouse's three 2:06 before intermission and taking a 62-43 lead into the locker room. Kidd scored his only two points in the half and doled out nine assists.
Nowitzki was 8-for-9 from the field as the Mavs shot an even 50 percent from the floor...Dallas shot 47.4 percent from three-point range, while Memphis made just 21.1 percent of their shots from beyond the arc...Howard scored 20 points despite a 9-for-27 shooting performance.
02/23 01:05:42 ET