DALLAS -- Behind a big second half from guard Monta Ellis, the Dallas Mavericks finally subdued the scrappy but ultimately undermanned Philadelphia 76ers, earning a 97-94 win Monday at American Airlines Center.
Philadelphia held the lead for nearly all of the first three quarters. However, Ellis had 13 points in the third quarter and finished with 24 points and 10 assists.
The Mavericks (7-4) improved to 5-0 at home ahead of a visit by the Southwest Division rival Houston Rockets and center Dwight Howard on Wednesday night. The Sixers, who again played without injured rookie point guard Michael Carter-Williams, fell to 5-7. They are 1-5 after a 4-2 start.
Ellis had just five points in the first half, taking just four shots. He got more involved and heated up in the third quarter as Dallas, which trailed by as many as 10 points on multiple occasions in the first half, tied the Sixers twice and cut the deficit to one five times in the third quarter. Finally, with 1:35 to go in the third, forward Shawn Marion finished off a fast break with a dunk to give the Mavericks a 70-69 lead.
After a few more lead swaps, Dallas extended the margin to as many as nine points before the Sixers got to within 90-87 with 3:38 to go.
The Mavericks, despite 21 turnovers that resulted in 22 Philadelphia points, held on to win, and a big reason was Philadelphia's poor shooting. The Sixers hit just 38.4 percent from the floor, going 6-for-21 from 3-point range (28.6 percent) and 12-for-22 from the free-throw line (54.5 percent).
Marion and forward Dirk Nowitzki each had 20 points for Dallas. Guard Jose Calderon, who knocked down a big 3-pointer to make it 93-87 with 3:08 to go, finished with 14 points.
Forward Evan Turner led the 76ers with 26 points, but he was held to five points in the fourth quarter. He added nine rebounds and seven assists. Guard Tony Wroten had 19 points, and guard James Anderson finished with 14.
Philadelphia forward Thaddeus Young had a rough night due to early foul trouble, and he started 2-for-12 from the field. He ended up with 10 points on 6-of-18 shooting.
Philadelphia led the entire first half, using strong drives to the basket to shred the Dallas defense and score 26 of its 47 first-half points in the paint. Despite shooting just 39.3 percent from the floor, missing half of their eight free throws plus a sluggish close to the second quarter, the Sixers held onto a four-point lead at halftime.
Both teams were playing their third game in four nights and each looked like it in a sloppy and scoreless first couple of minutes. The Sixers led 8-0 before Dallas finally got on the board at the seven-minute mark.
NOTES: Sixers rookie PG Michael Carter-Williams missed his fourth consecutive game due to a left foot arch bruise. ... Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle used a different starting lineup for the first time this season, replacing C Samuel Dalembert with F Jae Crowder to match up with Philadelphia's smaller lineup. ... G Shane Larkin, a first-round draft pick this year, was active for the first time and made his pro debut late in the first quarter. Larkin fractured his right ankle in July and required surgery. ... The Sixers lost for the eighth consecutive visit to Dallas. ... Sixers coach Brett Brown is working prior to games with injured rookie C Nerlens Noel on "a complete rebuild" of his shot. Brown said Noel's surgically repaired knee is getting better, but there remains no timetable for Noel's possible return this season.