Game 75: Mavs vs. Warriors

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Warriors vs. Mavericks

The Mavs battled the Warriors into overtime Tuesday but a close no-call on a potential goaltend, followed by a Golden State basket, was too much to overcome.

DALLAS — Entering Tuesday night locked in a three-way tie with Memphis and Phoenix for the final two playoff seeds in the Western Conference standings, the Dallas Mavericks looked to conclude their eight-game homestand in a big way.

Sitting just 1 1/2 games back of the Golden State Warriors for the sixth spot in the standings, the Mavericks attempted to even the season series at two wins apiece. The Mavs also tried to bring their home-heavy stretch to a close with a victory before embarking on a four-game road trip.

But for a fourth time on their homestand the Mavs would be pushed into overtime. And despite the best efforts of 12-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki and starting 2-guard Monta Ellis, the Mavericks (44-31) left their home floor heartbroken following a 122-120 overtime defeat.

“It was a fun game to be a part of,” Nowitzki said following the loss. “Obviously, it’s two good teams going at it for playoff positioning, and I don’t even know what to say. It was a weird ending, but we let so many chances get away.”

Hoping to send Golden State to a second straight loss following the Warriors’ 89-84 home defeat to New York on Monday, the Mavericks would begin the night with an uphill climb after surrendering an 8-0 run to start the game. The Mavs then tried to settle down, taking advantage of the absences of Warriors center Andrew Bogut (pelvic/groin contusion) and big man David Lee (strained right hamstring) and leaning on Nowitzki and Ellis to get back into the game. Still, after falling down by as many as 11 in the opening quarter, the Mavs found themselves on the downside of a 30-21 deficit following the first 12 minutes of play.

After allowing the Warriors (46-28) to hit 13 of their 23 shot attempts in the first period, the Dallas defense looked to scramble to string together stops early in the second stanza. The defensive intensity then carried over to the offensive end as Nowitzki continued to will his team. But Nowitzki would soon receive some help from the interior play of backup big man Brandan Wright to counter the perimeter production of Jordan Crawford off the Warriors’ bench. And after Ellis tied the game at 37-all with a 3-pointer from the corner, sixth man Vince Carter’s back-to-back triples gave the Mavs their first lead of the night at 45-42.

Carter continued to stroke the hot hand from there on a night in which the Mavs organization honored his campaign for the Sixth Man of the Year Award by handing out 15,000 T-shirts. And with Nowitzki also finding nothing but the bottom of the net from the outside, the Mavs pushed the lead to 11 themselves before taking a 62-53 advantage into the halftime intermission.

Scoring 16 of his 22 first-half points in the second quarter, Nowitzki boosted the Mavs to the lead at the midway mark while hitting nine of his 14 shots. Meanwhile, the Warriors’ 56.1 percent as a team bettered the Mavs’ 52.3 percent through two quarters, adding a 20-19 rebounding edge.

“We were engaged in the game and giving ourselves a chance to win. That’s what we wanted to do,” Carter said.

With Warriors sharpshooters Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson finding a rhythm from the outside, the visitors began the third quarter on an 8-1 spurt to get back within an arm’s reach. But Nowitzki would quickly respond, beating the shot clock with his fifth 3-pointer of the night.

Ellis then began to attack the rim relentlessly, looking to keep the Warriors at bay. But Curry wouldn’t be denied as the Warriors regained the upper hand, taking an 85-81 edge into the fourth.

“We tried to get a bit of a run early in the second half, but it didn’t work out. And so we were basically matching them and credit them, they made it their kind of game,” Mavs coach Rick Carlisle confessed. “You know, we had leads. We had an 11-point lead, and you’ve just got to keep making the right plays to put yourself in a position to finish, which we did. And then you’ve got to make plays to finish, which we didn’t.”

In need of a spark to begin the final period, the Mavs would be delighted when reserve guard Devin Harris connected on two 3-pointers from the wing to bring the home team within one. Still, after a driving layup by Thompson forced a Dallas timeout, the Mavs trailed 95-91 with 6:40 remaining.

However, the Mavs quickly took the lead right back with an 8-0 run sparked by Ellis. And with the cat-quick combo guard reassuming his role as the team’s closer following a posterizing dunk over Jermaine O’Neal, the Mavericks looked to hold the Warriors off down the stretch.

But the Warriors wouldn’t go quietly after Draymond Green’s score inside forced a timeout by Carlisle with the Mavericks up 104-102 and 2:25 on the game clock. Nowitzki’s one-legged fadeaway attempted to settle the Mavs, however, forcing a Golden State timeout in response with 1:43 remaining. Still, following a 3-pointer by Andre Igoudala, which led to another Dallas timeout with 1:35 left to play, the Mavericks weren’t out of the woods safely.

Thompson then answered Ellis’ mid-range jumper with a triple from the top of the key to tie the game at 108-all. And after collecting a defensive stop against a stagnant Dallas offense, Golden State had 40.8 seconds left to surge ahead.

But the Mavs’ defense would prove to be equally up the challenge, forcing a stop and calling for timeout with 1.7 seconds left. However, after an errand inbound pass by point guard Jose Calderon in the direction of Ellis, the Warriors came up with possession before time expired to send the game into an extra period.

After a score by Wright opened the overtime, the Mavs attempted to create a separation on the scoreboard. Nowitzki would do his part, hitting another patented fadeaway before connecting on a sixth 3-pointer. But Thompson returned fire at the other end from behind the arc to keep the Warriors close. Curry’s pull-up jumper then gave Golden State a 118-117 edge with 1:42 left for the Mavs to respond.

The Dallas offense then grew stagnant once again until Calderon’s 3-pointer put the Mavs back in front. But, after a dunk by O’Neal and apparent no-call of goaltending on a rejection by the big man at the other end on Ellis’ drive, Curry stepped in again, hitting a jumper over Calderon with .1 seconds left to secure the win for the Warriors.

“The last sequence, I actually don’t know what happened,” a still dumbfounded Nowitzki said after the loss. “I think [Ellis’] shot had a chance to get to the rim. And if that’s the case, you can’t just get it out of the air. To me that’s a goaltend, and I asked the referee what happened. The explanation was that the ball was two feet short (of the rim), and if that’s the call then he can get it out of the air. But where I was from I think it had a chance to at least hit the rim, and that’s a goaltend to me. And then we were kind of shocked by the no-call and we were kind of running back, and you’ve got to give Steph credit. He made a heck of a shot. I thought Jose was all over him. … It was actually good defense and Steph didn’t even have his feet set the right way. He’s just got great touch and he threw it up and it went in, so it’s a heartbreaker.”

Scoring 33 points on 13-of-21 shooting and hitting six of his eight 3-point attempts, Nowitzki led five Mavs in double figures while snatching down 11 rebounds for the double-double. Ellis added 27 points on 11-of-23 shooting while dishing out six assists. Meanwhile, Wright pitched in 14 points, Carter added 12 points and Harris pitched in 10 points off the bench.

Thompson led five Warriors in double figures with 27 points on 11-of-24 shooting and Curry finished with 23 points and 10 assists. Meanwhile, the Warriors’ 57.1 percent as a team bettered the Mavs’ 49 percent shooting, adding a 44-43 rebounding edge and 62-50 advantage in points in the paint.

“It’s disappointing, but we’ve got to get ready for the next game now,” Carlisle said while turning his attention to the upcoming road trip. “I’m not big on analyzing how disappointing it is. I know how disappointing it is, and we didn’t deserve to win tonight. You’ve got to make the right plays at the right time, and we did not do that.”

Note: The Mavericks will now begin a four-game road trip on the West Coast, playing the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night. The Clippers lead the season series 3-0. The game will air nationally on TNT at 9:30 p.m. CT.

The Mavs return to American Airlines Center next Thursday, April 10, to host the San Antonio Spurs. San Antonio leads the season series 3-0. The game will air nationally on TNT at 7 p.m. CT. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling (214) 747-MAVS (6287) or by visiting


All Stats

A. Iguodala, F 40 7-9 2-3 0-1 2 6 8 7 1 0 0 0 5 16
D. Green, F 42 4-9 1-1 0-0 1 6 7 6 2 1 2 3 12 9
J. O'Neal, C 33 9-12 0-0 2-4 4 4 8 0 0 1 1 1 -2 20
K. Thompson, G 47 11-24 4-9 1-1 0 5 5 5 1 0 2 3 6 27
S. Curry, G 43 10-17 3-8 0-0 1 2 3 10 2 0 1 2 8 23
M. Speights 17 4-7 0-0 0-0 2 7 9 1 0 0 4 3 6 8
H. Barnes 13 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 1 1 1 -5 0
S. Blake 13 0-3 0-3 0-0 0 0 0 3 0 0 1 1 -9 0
J. Crawford 15 7-10 5-7 0-0 0 4 4 0 0 0 0 2 -11 19
H. Armstrong 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
A. Bogut 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
F. Ezeli 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
O. Kuzmic 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
D. Lee 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
N. Nedovic 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
TEAM   52-91 15-31 3-6 10 34 44 33 6 3 12 16   122
    57.1% 48.4%                      

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All Stats

S. Marion, F 35 4-8 0-0 0-0 4 6 10 2 0 1 1 1 -8 8
D. Nowitzki, F 39 13-21 6-8 1-3 1 10 11 3 2 1 0 0 -1 33
S. Dalembert, C 7 1-2 0-0 0-0 2 1 3 0 0 0 0 1 -15 2
M. Ellis, G 42 11-23 2-5 3-4 1 1 2 6 2 1 2 0 -9 27
J. Calderon, G 36 3-9 1-4 1-1 0 2 2 6 0 0 3 2 -8 8
V. Carter 30 4-13 3-7 1-2 2 2 4 4 2 1 0 2 9 12
B. Wright 25 5-6 0-0 4-4 4 1 5 0 0 1 1 0 -3 14
D. Harris 16 3-7 2-4 2-2 0 1 1 4 0 0 0 3 6 10
J. Crowder 19 0-3 0-2 0-0 0 2 2 2 0 0 0 0 15 0
D. Blair 11 3-4 0-0 0-0 1 2 3 0 1 0 1 3 4 6
W. Ellington 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
B. James 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
S. Larkin 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
R. Ledo 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
G. Mekel 0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
TEAM   47-96 14-30 12-16 15 28 43 27 7 5 8 12   120
    49.0% 46.7%                      

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Postgame: Dirk Nowitzki

Mavs F Dirk Nowitzki looks back on Tuesday's game against Golden State and says the team needs to remain focused and keep fighting.


Marion Denies Speights

Shawn Marion meets Marreese Speights at the apex and denies his dunk attempt late in the fourth quarter.


Ellis Over O’Neal

Monta Ellis speeds around the corner and smashes it over Jermaine O'Neal.


Ellis Goes Reverse

Monta Ellis takes the hand-off from Shawn Marion and makes the sweet reverse layup down the baseline.


Ellis Doing Work

Monta Ellis lights up the Warriors with 27-points in regulation.


Postgame: Jose Calderon

Mavs PG Jose Calderon says the team must move on from Tuesday's game against the Warriors and focus on the remaining seven games of the season.


Practice Report: Dirk Nowitzki

Mavs F Dirk Nowitzki looks ahead to tomorrow night's game against Golden State, how this year's team compares to ones in the past, the importance of each game down the stretch and more.


Shootaround: Shawn Marion

Mavs F Shawn Marion looks ahead to tonight's game against Golden State and says every single game should be treated like a playoff game right now.


Shootaround: Samuel Dalembert

Mavs C Sam Dalembert talks about Tuesday's game against the Warriors, how he was able to take advantage of an extra day of rest and more.


Practice Report: Rick Carlisle

Mavs head coach Rick Carlisle weighs in on Tuesday's matchup against the Warriors, how big the extra day of rest was and more.

DALLAS — After positioning themselves into a three-way tie for the seventh spot in the Western Conference standings, the Dallas Mavericks will conclude their eight-game homestand Tuesday night with plenty of playoff implications.

Currently tied with Phoenix and Memphis as the three teams battle for the final two playoff spots, the Mavericks (44-30) will also have an opportunity to move up over the course of the final eight regular-season games. That makes Tuesday’s matchup against the Golden State Warriors even more pivotal as the Mavs try to crack a dent in their 1 1/2-game deficit for the sixth seed, looking to also split the season series at 2-2.

“Every single game is basically positioning for the Western Conference playoffs, so every game counts right now and we know what’s at stake,” Mavs forward Shawn Marion explained. “If we win tonight, then we split the series with them. … We know what we’ve got to do, and it’s a tight race to the finish line right now. It can’t get anymore exciting than this. If you’re not excited by this, I don’t know what it is.”

Hoping to inch closer to the Warriors (45-28) in the standings, the Mavs will try to continue the trend in the season series after the home team won all three previous meetings. The Mavericks will also try to conclude their franchise-record homestand by holding serve, winning 10 of 12 at American Airlines Center in the overall series against the Warriors entering the night.

“We’re looking forward to it,” Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. “We’ve got a team that loves pressure. You know, we do and we’ve got a lot of experienced guys that embrace this kind of situation. And if you’re not embracing it, you shouldn’t be in it. It’s exciting and it’s hard. It’s supposed to be hard. You know, it’s the best basketball in the world and it’s supposed to be hard, but we’ve got to make sure we’re up to it and we’ll be ready.”

Note: The Mavericks return to action at American Airlines Center on Tuesday, concluding their eight-game homestand against the Golden State Warriors. Golden State leads the season series 2-1. The game will air locally on TXA 21 at 7:30 p.m. CT. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling (214) 747-MAVS (6287) or by visiting

DALLAS — Despite a lackluster performance in their last game, the Dallas Mavericks remained in the playoff discussion with a win.

Relinquishing a 17-point lead in the first half Saturday night before rallying for a 103-100 home win over the Sacramento Kings, the Mavericks (44-30) would somehow manage to keep pace in the heated playoff race. And with just eight games remaining on the regular-season schedule, the Mavs gladly took the win and moved ahead.

“That’s not what you pictured or how you expected to handle them,” four-time All-Star Shawn Marion said of the win. “But, once we stopped doing things we were doing to get the lead, that’s when they got back in the game. They made a game of it, but we were able to pull it out this time and any win counts. You can’t think about the negatives of it. Any W going in that win column is big for us.”

Now, after moving up from ninth into a three-way tie for the seventh spot in the Western Conference standings, the Mavs will try to continue ascending while concluding their eight-game homestand Tuesday against the Golden State Warriors. And with the Warriors (45-28) just 1 ½ games up on Dallas for the sixth slot in the West following Monday’s 89-84 loss to New York, the Mavs will try to further cement a place in the postseason by claiming another signature win on their home floor.

The Warriors won two of the previous three matchups — both at home — between the teams this season, but the Mavs have taken 10 of 12 in the overall series at American Airlines Center.  And with Warriors big men Andrew Bogut and David Lee both uncertain to play, the Mavericks could have a golden opportunity to finish their homestand on a high note.

“This is a big game, no question. But, if you look at our remaining schedule, every game is big, especially how tight it is this year,” 12-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki explained. “Not only for the seeding but also we could still drop out, and we were out (Sunday). Not only are you dropping for position this year, but there’s still a scare of not even making the playoffs, so every game is massive. You know, even the Sacramento game the other day was big for us to even grind out a win. No matter how ugly it was, we definitely needed the win. And you could say that about all the remaining games.”

Note: The Mavericks return to action at American Airlines Center on Tuesday, concluding their eight-game homestand against the Golden State Warriors. Golden State leads the season series 2-1. The game will air locally on TXA 21 at 7:30 p.m. CT. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling (214) 747-MAVS (6287) or by visiting