NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, April 16th (All times eastern)
Utah Jazz (40-39) at Dallas Mavericks (59-21), 8:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Dallas Mavericks attempt to halt a two-game losing streak when they host the streaking Utah Jazz tonight at American Airlines Center.
The Mavericks are the fourth seed in the Western Conference playoff race. They trail the San Antonio Spurs by 1 1/2 games for first place in the Southwest Division and the top spot in the West.
Utah is 1 1/2 games behind Sacramento, which hosts the Hornets this evening, for the eighth and final playoff spot.
The Lakers, who are No. 7 and host Phoenix this afternoon, clinch a berth in the postseason with a win or a Utah loss. If the Jazz lose and the Kings win, Utah is eliminated.
Dallas opens a season-ending two-game homestand. On Thursday, Shawn Marion had 29 points and Tim Thomas netted 22 to lead the Phoenix Suns to a 117-104 win over the Mavericks at U.S. Airways Center.
All-Star Dirk Nowitzki finished with 36 points and 11 boards in the loss to Phoenix for the Mavericks, who are 5-5 in their last 10 games overall.
A victory tonight would give Dallas its second 60-win season. The Mavericks won 60 games in the 2002-03 campaign.
The Mavericks are 33-6 at home this season. They will host the Clippers on Wednesday at American Airlines Center.
The Jazz have won five straight games and play the middle contest of a three- game road trip. On Friday, Andrei Kirilenko finished with 25 points, nine rebounds, six assists and seven blocks to lead Utah to a 105-104 triumph over the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets at the Ford Center.
Carlos Boozer ended with 23 points in the win over the Hornets for Utah, which has won eight of its last 10 contests overall.
Utah, which will visit San Antonio on Monday at the AT&T Center, is 19-20 on the road this season. It wraps up the season on Wednesday against the Golden State Warriors at the Delta Center.
The Mavericks have won two of the three meetings between the clubs this season. The Jazz have lost six straight and eight of their last nine at Dallas.
04/16 10:38:32 ET