DALLAS -- If the Dallas Mavericks are going to make serious push into playoff contention, they're going to need more consistent performances than the one they showed Wednesday night in a 111-96 win over the hapless Orlando Magic.
Don't let the score fool you. Other than a spectacular 42-point first quarter and late 21-2 run to pull away, Dallas (24-29) was lackluster at best. The Mavs followed with 17 points in the second quarter, led Orlando by six points at halftime and fell behind in the third quarter after an awful start to the period.
The Magic, who dropped to 6-20 on the road, trailed just 90-88 with 7:37 to go before unraveling. Point guard Jameer Nelson injured his left knee during the meltdown and was taken to the locker room to be evaluated.
A pair of 3-pointers from Vince Carter and Shawn Marion sandwiched two baskets by center Brandan Wright to put Dallas ahead 104-90 with 3:22 to go and bury the Magic (15-39).
With the NBA trade deadline approaching at 3 p.m. ET Thursday, Magic guard J.J. Redick, a 3-point specialist who could help any contending team, might have had his mind on whether he'll be staying or leaving. He struggled through an awful shooting night with 10 points on 3-of-12 shooting, including 1-of-5 from beyond the arc.
Marion and Elton Brand led six Mavs in double-figure scoring with 17 points apiece. Carter finished with 14, O.J. Mayo had 13 and Dirk Nowitzki and Mike James each had 12.
Arron Afflalo paced Orlando with 21 points and rookie Maurice Harkless had 20.
NOTES: Dallas' 42-point first quarter was their highest output for any quarter this season. ... A streak of the road team winning the last nine games in this series came to an end. ... Mavs center Chris Kaman missed his ninth consecutive game since sustaining a concussion. ... Orlando entered the game 6-19 on the road, tied for second-fewest road wins in the Eastern Conference with Charlotte and Philadelphia (Washington is last with four). ... Orlando forward Hedo Turkoglu is serving a 20-game suspension for violating the league's substance-abuse policy. He is eligible to return March 27.