Mavericks 103, Warriors 99

Art Garcia, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

DALLAS -- Getting an efficient night from forward Dirk Nowitzki helped the Dallas Mavericks slip past the Golden State Warriors 103-99 Wednesday night at American Airlines Center.
Nowitzki scored a game-high 22 on 11-of-19 shooting, as the Mavericks snapped a two-game losing streak and improved to 10-6. The Warriors (9-7) lost on the second night of a back-to-back for the fourth time in four tries this season.
The Mavericks had big contributions off their bench, with forward Jae Crowder (12 points) and DeJuan Blair (11) both scoring in double figures. Rookie guard Shane Larkin added seven points and six assists.
The Warriors, coming off a draining 102-101 win Tuesday at New Orleans, fell behind in the opening minutes and trailed for the rest of the night. Golden State managed to keep it within striking distance and made one last run late in the fourth before falling short.
Golden State guard Stephen Curry led the visitors with 29 points and knocked down six 3-pointers. Guard Klay Thompson struggled with his shot (5-for-16) but still managed to score 20 and grab 10 rebounds.
Golden State did carry over its momentum from the end of the second quarter into the start of the third, pulling within 59-55 on Curry's 3-pointer that preceded a Dallas timeout. The Mavericks withstood the surge and went into the final period up 82-71 on Larkin's buzzer-beating running jumper.
The Mavericks were up by as many as 17 in the fourth before one last desperate push by Golden State. Dallas aided the surge by missing 10 of 11 shots as the Warriors made it a four-point game (99-95) with 2 1/2 minutes left. But that's as close as Golden State would get.
The Mavericks were a step quicker than Golden State for much of the first half. Dallas took advantage of its good looks to shoot 49 percent and take a 55-46 lead into the locker room.
Dallas took its largest lead of the first half, 53-36, on guard Monta Ellis' driving layup late in the second period. Nowitzki had 12 points at the break, forward Shawn Marion added eight, and Crowder and guard Wayne Ellington combined for 12 off the bench.
The Mavericks jumped out to a 20-12 lead, with guard Jose Calderon, Nowitzki and center Samuel Dalembert combining for 18 of those points. Thanks to a pair of breakaways by Marion late in the first quarter, Dallas finished the period up 28-22.
The Warriors had an 8-0 run just before halftime to cut into the deficit. Curry and forward David Lee, who scored seven of Golden State's first nine points, each had 11 in the half.
NOTES: Mavericks G Monta Ellis came into the game shooting 49.6 percent, his best mark since the 2007-08 season, when he was with Golden State. "With more experience and being with different teams your game evolves," Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. ... Warriors C Andrew Bogut returned after a one-game suspension for fighting. Backup C Jermaine O'Neal filled in nicely with 18 points and eight rebounds in a win at New Orleans. ... Dallas C Samuel Dalembert was back in the starting lineup after a one-game benching for missing a shootaround. ... Warriors coach Mark Jackson said earlier this season that G Stephen Curry and G Klay Thompson is the best-shooting backcourt in league history. Carlisle compared the duo favorably to Hall of Famers Jerry West and Gail Goodrich. "Just as far as lining it up from anywhere, I've never seen two guys like this before at the same time, on the same team," Carlisle said of the Golden State duo. "It's more than formidable."

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