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Mavericks 81, Pacers 73

The SportsXchange

INDIANAPOLIS -- Guard Monta Ellis led the Mavericks with 23 points, nine rebounds and six assists, and Dallas posted an 81-73 win over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday.

The Pacers (40-12) suffered a rare home defeat, falling to 25-3 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The Mavericks (32-22) evened their road record at 14-14, bouncing back from a blowout loss to the Bobcats on Tuesday in Charlotte.

Dallas forward Dirk Nowitzki finished with 18 points and six rebounds, and reserve swingman Vince Carter added 11 points.

Brandan Wright saw 11:42 minutes of action, nearly all in the second half, but he was clutch when the Mavericks needed it most.

With 5:19 to play in the fourth quarter, the 6-foot-10 forward took the pass from guard Shane Larkin and hit the jumper to give Dallas a 68-66 lead.

Dallas outscored Indiana 21-11 in the fourth quarter.

The Mavericks stretched the margin to seven points with 3:47 minutes to play after Nowitzki converted two free throws. Nowitzki played despite spraining his left ankle in Tuesday's game.

Four Pacers scored in double figures, led by guard George Hill, who had 14 points. Guard Lance Stephenson contributed 13 points and 10 rebounds, and forwards David West and Paul George added 12 points apiece.

Neither team shot well. Indiana hit 27 of 84 attempts from the floor (32.1 percent), while Dallas went 30-for-84 (35.7 percent).

The sloppy play might have contributed to tempers boiling over. West and Nowitzki's back-and-forth pushing and shoving drew the attention of the officials. West was assessed a technical foul with less than a minute to play in the first half.

Each team will have five days off for the All-Star break. The Pacers play host to the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday, the same day Mavericks face the visiting Miami Heat.

NOTES: Dallas averaged 44.8 points in the paint during its five-game winning streak, which was snapped Tuesday night against Charlotte. During the same span, the Mavericks allowed just 32.4. In the loss to the Bobcats, the Mavericks were outscored 60-42 in the paint. ... The Pacers allow an NBA low 35.1 points per game in the paint. ... The Pacers swept the 2012-13 season series with the Mavericks, 103-83 at home and 103-78 in Dallas. ... Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle spent four seasons as the coach of the Pacers (2003-2007), and led them to the Eastern Conference finals in 2004. ... Before Wednesday's loss, the Pacers were 8-0 in the second game of a multi-game homestand. ... G Devin Harris sat out due to a right knee/ankle injury. ... Three technical fouls were issued in the first half, two against the Pacers (G Lance Stephenson and F David West), and one against the Mavericks (G Jose Calderon).
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