For the second night in a row, the Dallas Mavericks came from behind late and eeked out a victory. This time it was against the New Orleans Pelicans. With 11 of his team-high 21 points coming in the final quarter, Dirk Nowitzki once again finished strong after struggling early, and with some quality defensive stops in the waining minutes, Dallas grinded out the win.
It was certainly not pretty, but fortunately style points don't matter in the NBA.
Vince Carter backed up Dirk with 15 points off the bench. He went 3-4 from beyond the three-point line, and it was the longball that seemed to be the saving grace for Dallas. As a team they shot nearly 46% from deep, but just 43% from the field and an uncharacteristically poor 68% from the line.
The Mavericks were absolutely pummeled on the glass tonight. The Pelicans outrebounded the visiting team 58-38, and got 21 boards and 16 points from Al-Farouq Aminu(though two of those points really belong to Shawn Marion). Those may remember Aminu had 16 points and 20 rebounds on the last game of the 2012-13 season. Aminu did not make his final shot, however, which would have put the Pelicans ahead with just a few seconds left.
Also leading the way for the Pelicans was Jrue Holiday, who had 26 points and 9 assists. After hitting a game-tying three with a minute and a half left, Holiday didn't take another shot and the Pelicans didn't score again. Dirk Nowitzki had one of his four(!) blocks on New Orleans' penultimate possession, perhaps the key play of the night, as Dallas was able to stop the Pelicans, holding on to a one-point lead.
Dallas gets some much needed rest before taking on the Portland Trailblazers Saturday in the second game of their four game road trip.