Dirk Nowitzki's 35 points carried the Dallas Mavericks as they were victorious over the Phoenix Suns, 112-106. Down by seven at halftime, the Suns led much of the third quarter, but never by more than four points. Once Phoenix took an 80-76 lead, Dallas scored the last nine of the third quarter. The Mavs led 85-80 entering the fourth quarter and never trailed again.
Dallas recored their 40th win before the All-Star break with the victory against the Suns. Dallas was 32-20 at the All-Star break last season. The Mavericks joined the Spurs, Celtics and Heat as the only teams to reach the 40-win plateau by the All-Star break. The Mavs moved their road record to 19-8, second best record in the NBA.
The Mavericks have now won eight of the last 10 meetings with Phoenix. The Suns have won the last 17-of-26 match-ups in Phoenix and hold an all-time record of 44-19 at home against the Mavericks. Now, Dallas is 20-9 against plus-.500 teams this season. The Mavericks were 28-19 against teams with a winning record in 2009-10.
With 112 points, Dallas has scored 100-plus points in 12 of its last 13 games. The Mavericks are 29-2 when they reach the century mark. They also won both games during the back-to-back situation leading up to the All-Star break. Dallas is 9-3 in the first half of back-to-backs and 8-4 in the second half of back-to-backs this season. The Mavericks have 20 back-to-backs scheduled this year, after they played 20 in 2009-10. Dallas went 15-5 in the first game of a back-to-back and 12-8 in the second game of a back-to-back in 2009-10.
Dallas heads into the All-Star Break as one of the league's hottest teams. The Mavericks have won 13 of their last 14 games (including 14 of their last 16 if you go back to the game against the Los Angeles Lakers). The Nuggets snapped the Mavericks’ 10-game winning streak with an Arron Afflalo buzzer beater at Denver on February 10.Did THAT Just Happen?!
- Dirk Nowitzki was on fire in the first half. He shot 8-10 from the field and had 19 points as the game went to halftime. The hot shooting continued in the second half as he finished the game by shooting 13-18 from the field. Nowitzki also shot 3-3 from beyond the arc and a perfect 6-6 from the free throw line.
- Roddy Beaubois got his first start of the season, 17th start of his NBA career. Beaubois came back down to earth in his second game back with the Mavericks. He played 19 minutes and scored nine points, one rebound, two assists and one steal. With Beaubois in the starting lineup, the Mavericks used their 15th different starting lineup of the season. With JJ Barea missing the game due to a fever, Beaubois handled his fair share of point guard responsibilities.
- Brendan Haywood only played 11 minutes, but the center was effective by scoring seven points and pulling down five rebounds. Tyson Chandler collected his 15th double-double of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds. The Mavericks are now 12-3 when Chandler records a double-double. He had a critical offensive rebound with just over three-and-a-half minutes left in the game and threw down a monster put-back dunk to give the Mavs more breathing room, 100-94. Brenson Chanwood combined for 19 points and 17 rebounds, not a bad night at the office.
- The Mavs went small with Nowitzki as the center during the tail end of the third quarter. The Suns were never able to really adjust on offense and on defense. Phoenix tried to take advantage of Nowitzki at the center position by forcing the ball to Marcin Gortat and Dallas did not mind them trying to do that.
Box Score Revelations
- Over their last three games, the Mavericks were shooting 54.8% (138-of-252) from the field. The hot shooting continued for the boys in blue as they shot 52.4% (43-82) against the Suns. The Mavericks moved to 17-3 when they shoot at least 50% from the field.
- Offensive rebounds were an issue as the Mavericks were minus-three in the offensive rebounding department (9-6). The second chance opportunities allowed the Suns to stay in the game and they out-rebounded the Mavs, 43-39.
- The Mavericks only had six free throw attempts (3-6) against the Kings. They shot 16-23 from the line against the Suns on Thursday night. At the 6:43 mark of the final quarter, the Suns were able to get into the penalty situation. Phoenix only shot two free throws and only made one of them. In that same period, the Mavs shot seven free throws and made six of them.
- Dallas had five players score in double figures, Nowitzki (35), Jason Terry (16), Shawn Marion (12), Chandler (12) and Peja Stojakovic (10). At least five Mavericks have scored in double figures in 13 consecutive games. Dallas is 27-4 when at least five players score 10-plus points.
- Jason Kidd did not go crazy in the third quarter. Kidd's lone basket of the quarter was a three-point basket. He did lead the team with 12 assists.
Tweetings From the Mavs Universe
- "Peja hits a nasty fadeaway. Fan behind me says, 'I never liked you!'"
- "Haywood should be able to decline free throws."
- "Sorry, Peja, but it's impossible to double-pump if you can't jump over a credit card."
- "Dallas and Phoenix is like watching a late 90s, early 00s All Star game. There's some old players on both teams."
- "Mavs : leading the league in shots to your junk since 2005."
- "Jason Kidd just reminded Steve Nash that he can't guard an old lady straight up."
BG's Baller of the Game:
Baller status has been granted to Dirk Nowitzki. His shooting was off the charts good, many of the shots barely touched the rim. Nowitzki has a chance to reach another milestone in the first game out of the break. 18 points by Nowitzki will have him pass Clyde Drexler and take possession of 23rd place on the All-Time Scoring List. For now, the shooting stud heads to Los Angeles for his 10th consecutive All-Star Game appearance. The Mavericks are 2-7 without Nowitzki in the lineup, they are 38-9 with Nowitzki in the lineup.
The All-Star Break has arrived for the Mavericks. They will return to the court on Wednesday to host the Utah Jazz. Wednesday will start the race to the finish as the Mavericks will have 26 games remaining on their regular season schedule. That game against the Jazz will be the last game for the Mavericks before the trade deadline. Just because there will be a long stretch of game inactivity, MMB will still have plenty of information to throw your way during All-Star Weekend. Mavs Report Cards, Let's Make a Deal? Dallas: Contender or Pretender, Chandler is...., all of that and more.
Twitter? I don't even know her! Oh......
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