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2 incredible defensive plays directly led to the Mavericks' 88-86 win over the Rockets

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Dirk Nowitzki, Wesley Matthews and Justin Anderson all combined to do something amazing for Dallas to win.

The Mavericks won what was essentially, in all respects, a playoff game on Wednesday against the Houston Rockets. They struggled to score in every quarter but the second, but somehow made it work defensively for an 88-86 win. The two biggest defensive plays of the game came in the closing minutes. Here they are.

1. Justin Anderson recovers out of nowhere to prevent a guaranteed layup

2. Dirk Nowitzki strips James Harden on the decisive possession, after incredible prevent defense from Matthews

That Vine doesn't do justice for the defense Matthews played on Harden leading up to the shot, but it was just as good. These two plays were incredible, and so was this win.