Sunday in San Antonio the Spurs beat the Dallas Mavericks 119-96 to win game 7 of their first round NBA playoff series. Tony Parker was great in the win, shooting 11-of-19 for 32 points, four rebounds and four assists. Here are some video highlights:
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Monta Ellis is headed to his first Game 7, and DeJuan Blair gets a chance to play his old team in San Antonio one more time after all.
Dallas star Dirk Nowitzki will return to the site of one of the best moments of his stellar career.
Ellis scored 12 of his 29 points to lead a fourth-quarter comeback that also got an energetic boost from Blair in his return after getting suspended, and the Mavericks forced a deciding game in their first-round series with top-seeded San Antonio, beating the Spurs 113-111 on Friday night.
“Put all of our chips on the table and see what happens,” said Ellis, whose 3-pointer put eighth-seeded Dallas ahead for a good at 94-92 with 5 minutes to go.
Tony Parker matched Nowitzki with 22 points to lead the heavily favored Spurs, who are stuck in a tossup series after they won all four games against the Mavericks during the regular season and had a 10-game winning streak against them after taking the opener.
– Associated Press
Tony Parker was nursing a sprained left ankle and playing a critical playoff game on no sleep only hours after the birth of his first child.
It was the perfect formula for a resurgent performance from the San Antonio Spurs point guard.
Parker had 23 points and five assists and San Antonio never trailed in a 109-103 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night, taking a 3-2 lead in the first-round series.
“Coming into the game I told him this is perfect for you,” Spurs forward Tim Duncan said. “This is what he does in situations like this where he doesn’t get a lot of sleep or is in a stressful situation. He always seems to play better. I somewhat expected it from him.
“He was really excited before the game. Obviously, he was really excited to have his son here and wanted to get this game really badly not only for his son but for the situation and the timing of it. He was really focused and it was good for us.”
Parker’s rebirth put San Antonio on the verge of closing out a tense series against its intrastate rival with Game 6 set for Friday in Dallas.
Vince Carter scored 28 points on 10-for-16 shooting for the Mavericks.
– Associated Press
Here’s the Fort Worth Star-Telegram blog repoting on the Spurs and Mavericks, who are facing each other in the first round of the NBA playoffs:
On a night when the Dallas Mavericks’ offense went silent after the first 41 minutes, the San Antonio Spurs’ Big 3 came up big Sunday afternoon.
Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili combined to score 65 of the Spurs’ 90 points, grab 17 of their 48 rebounds, and dispensed nine of their 14 assists as San Antonio opened the playoffs with a 90-85 triumph over the Dallas Mavericks at AT&T Center.
“I wish I could always score like this, or Tony, or Tim,’’ said Ginobili, who scored 17 points and collected six rebounds. “The way they play defense didn’t let us move the ball as much as we usually do to find open teammates, so we played way more one-on-one.”
Here’s the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporting on the Dallas Mavericks, who are back in the playoffs. There is now just one playoff berth left, in the Western conference, and it will go to the Grizzlies or Suns. Anyway:
Champagne might as well have been flowing in the Dallas Mavericks’ locker room after what they were able to accomplish Saturday night.
Down 13 points in the third quarter and in a tense fight for their playoff lives, the Mavs clinched their 13th postseason berth in the past 14 years with a pulsating 101-98 victory over the Phoenix Suns at American Airlines Center.
The Mavericks (49-32) will seek to win 50 games for the first time since the 2010-11 season when they end the regular season Wednesday night in Memphis.
Using every ounce of energy they had, the Mavericks had to rally from a 13-point second-half deficit to beat the Suns, who dropped to 47-33.
Monta Ellis tied his season high with 37 points and Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 of his 23 points in the second half as the Mavericks kept barking at each other on the court during tense moments, and it paid off in the end.
Here’s ESPN Dallas reporting on Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki, who is a scorer of historical proportions:
Dirk Nowitzki has climbed higher than “The Human Highlight Film.”
The Dallas Mavericks star passed Dominique Wilkins for 11th place on the all-time scoring list Friday night when Nowitzki hit a free throw with 8:47 remaining in the third quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers.
“Unbelievable,” said Nowitzki , who finished with 27 points on 11-of-14 shooting in the Mavs’ 107-95 win, giving him 26,678 points for his career. “It’s been a crazy ride. I used to be a big fan of Dominique. I watched all his dunk contests and the many ways he could score, sometimes missing his own shot and he’d be the person to dunk over two people. He was just so much fun to watch.
“It’s been surreal. It’s been a crazy ride for 16 years, and I’m going to keep competing for a couple more years.”
Here’s the Dallas Morning News blog reporting on the Mavericks, who on Thursday beat the Clippers in Los Angeles, 113-107.
It’s a huge win: Just keep repeating that to yourself. Don’t worry about the fact that the Mavericks lost all but two points of a 109-97 lead in 85 seconds, which is really hard to do for an NBA team that still is trying hard. “The win was nice,” said Dirk Nowitzki. “Not so much the last couple minutes. We started to give the ball away again. And (J.J.) Redick had a (3-point) shot for the lead, which was amazing after having a 10-point lead.” Nevertheless, the Mavericks held on and that’s all that really matters.
Hope springs eternal: This win, and the win against Oklahoma City at home last week, is the sort of showing that makes you believe that the Mavericks have a puncher’s chance when the playoffs roll around. And it looks more and more now like the Mavericks will be a part of the postseason party this season. They aren’t in, by any stretch. But they have the three worst teams in the Western Conference (by record) coming up to finish this trip. They could be knocking on the door of clinching a playoff spot by the time they return home Wednesday.
Thursday in Los Angeles, the Dallas Mavericks stepped up and beat the Clippers, 113-107. Here are some video highlights of Blake Griffin and Dirk Nowitzki, who both had good teams for their squads:
Here’s the Dallas Morning News blog reporting on the Mavericks, owner Mark Cuban and veteran star Dirk Nowitzki:
Last week, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban sort-of called out Dirk Nowitzki, saying the Mavericks needed more defense and rebounding from the future Hall of Fame forward, especially on nights when he isn’t shooting well.
Tonight, Cuban watched Nowitzki score 32 points, pull down 10 rebounds, add six assists and four steals in a 128-119 overtime victory over Oklahoma City.
Is this what you were hoping for, Mark?
“It’s not a surprise,” Cuban said. “That’s what he does.”
Cuban laughed when asked if he would take credit for lighting a fire under Nowitzki. “No, absolutely not,” he said. “It’s all Dirk.”
Besides, Cuban’s semi-critical comments occurred a full week ago. In between, the Mavericks played four games, two of them overtime losses.
In his most recent game, Sunday’s 107-104 home overtime loss to Brooklyn, Nowitzki shot 2-of-12 from the field and scored only 10 points.
Cuban, though, knew Nowitzki would bounce back.
Here’s Mavericks guard Monta Ellis hitting a great reverse layup against the Nets. Brooklyn wound up winning the game in overtime, 107-104:
Here’s the New York Post reporting on the latest Nets victory:
Joe Johnson made sure Jason Kidd’s 41st birthday was a happy one.
Johnson, who has been automatic in late and close situations since joining the Nets two summers ago, hit the game-tying layup with 9.9 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter and then led the Nets with six points in overtime on the way to an improbable 107-104 victory over the Mavericks in front of a sellout crowd of 19,603 at American Airlines Center Sunday night.
“Down the stretch, man,” Johnson said, “those moments are ones I really cherish and love.”
They have become moments the Nets (37-31) love to have Johnson for, as he is 7-for-7 in his one-plus seasons as a Net when they are within three points in the final 10 seconds of the game, and 3-for-3 this season.
“He’s clutch, man,” said Deron Williams, who finished with 15 points in his return to his hometown. “That’s why the ball is in his hands.”
Here’s the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporting on the 41-27 Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban and Dirk Nowitzki:
It’s not often that Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban publicly criticizes his superstar forward, Dirk Nowitzki.
Monday, though, was one of those rare occasions.
Cuban took time before Monday’s game against the Boston Celtics to tell the media of a conversation he had with Nowitzki earlier in the day. It’s about as critical as Cuban as ever publicly been about Nowitzki.
“I think sometimes he loses concentration, and I think we’ve got to get past that,” Cuban said. “I mentioned it to him today. I asked him how his nap was during the game [Sunday at Oklahoma City]. He laughed. At least that’s while I was facing him. When I turned my back and walked away, I don’t know.”
Nowitzki had two first-quarter rebounds against the Thunder and finished the game with just four boards and 17 points on 6-of-12 shooting. Cuban also was none too pleased that Nowitzki had just 12 points and six rebounds during last Tuesday’s 108-85 loss on the road to the Golden State Warriors.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have recalled rookie guard Shane Larkin from the Texas Legends of the NBA Development League.
Larkin (5-11, 176) had 22 points and 11 assists in the win against the Maine Red Claws last night. In four games with the Legends this season, he has averaged 15.3 points, 8.3 assists, and 4.8 rebounds in 35.8 minutes. He has played in 42 games for the Mavericks and is averaging 2.9 points and 1.6 assists in 11.1 minutes per contest.
In related moves, the Mavericks reassigned Gal Mekel to the Legends. He will be available for tonight’s game against the Tulsa 66ers. Mekel has played in three Legends games and has averages of 9.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1.3 steals in 27.7 minutes.
Here’s ESPN Dallas reporting on an NBA milestone set by Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki:
With a fadeaway jumper at the 11:46-mark of the first quarter in his team’s game against the Utah Jazz, Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki officially moved past Hall of Famer and Boston Celtics legend John Havlicek.
Nowitzki moved into a tie with Havlicek for 12th place with a 15-foot jumper at the 8:29 mark of the fourth quarter in the team’s 108-85 loss to the Golden State Warriors Tuesday night. He eventually finished with 31 points and moved into sole possession of the No. 12 spot on the all-time scoring list in the Mavericks’ 108-101 win over the Jazz.
Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle began his NBA career in Boston and got to know Havlicek well. He can say without hesitancy that “Hondo” respects Nowitzki.
Watch video highlights of Dallas Mavericks guard Monta Ellis tossing up some trick shots in pregame shootaround:
Texas Legends’ forward Damion James was today named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played Monday, March 4 – Sunday, March 9. The award is the first for James, who becomes the second Legends player to be honored as Performer of the Week this season.
James (6-7, 225, Texas) led the Legends to a 3-0 week last week, averaging 24.7 points to go with 14.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.7 blocks. He recorded a season-high 19 rebounds on March 6, in a 126-119 win over the Iowa Energy, scoring 34 points to tie his season best.
James, who was traded to Texas from the Bakersfield Jam last month, is averaging 24.9 points and 12.0 rebounds in eight games with the Legends. For the season, he is averaging 16.4 points and 7.9 rebounds in 35 total games.
Other top performers considered included Canton’s Arinze Onuaku, playing on assignment from the Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles’ Manny Harris, Maine’s Tyshawn Taylor, Springfield’s Willie Reed and Sioux Falls’ Larry Drew II.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have recalled rookie guard Gal Mekel from the Texas Legends of the NBA Development League.
Mekel (6-3, 202) is averaging 2.4 points, 2.1 assists and 9.6 minutes in 30 games (one start) for Dallas this season.
Mekel was assigned to the D-League on March 4. He appeared in three games for the Legends and averaged 9.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1.3 steals in 27.7 minutes.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have assigned rookie guard Gal Mekel to the Texas Legends of the NBA Development League.
Mekel (6-3, 202) is averaging 2.4 points, 2.1 assists and 9.6 minutes in 30 games (one start) this season.
He has missed the last 21 games of the season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery to address a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee.
Mekel (6-3, 191) spent two seasons at Wichita State University (2006-07, 2007-08) before leaving school early and beginning his professional career in Europe. In his first season overseas, he was named the 2009 All-Israeli League Newcomer of the Year.
Last season, the point guard led Maccabi Haifa to an Israeli League Championship en route to claiming his second Most Valuable Player award. Mekel averaged 13.3 points, 5.4 assists, 2.6 rebounds, 1.4 steals and 32.3 minutes in 30 games while shooting .525 from the field and .779 from the free throw line.
The Petah Tikva, Israel native is just the second Israeli-born player to sign with an NBA team. He follows in the footsteps of veteran forward Omri Casspi.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have reassigned Jae Crowder and Shane Larkin to the Texas Legends of the NBA Development League.
Crowder (6-6, 235) and Larkin (5-11, 176) were both a part of Thursday night’s Legends’ victory. Crowder finished with 23 points, 18 rebounds and 10 assists to record the Legends’ first triple-double of the season. Larkin chipped in 9 points, 9 assists and 5 rebounds.
Both Mavericks will join the Legends and be available for tonight’s game when they take on the Los Angeles D-Fenders at 7:00 pm CT at the Dr. Pepper Arena in Frisco.
Here’s ESPN Dallas reporting on the Mavericks, who have enjoyed great success this month but have a tougher schedule going forward:
We might find out what the Mavs are made of over the next eight games, starting with Friday night’s home game against the rugged Chicago Bulls.
“The competition gets tougher,” coach Rick Carlisle said. “So it’s more physical, it’s harder to score, it’s harder to get stops. You’ve got to be that much more tied together, you’ve got to be that much more efficient and you’ve got to have that much more concentration on the boards.”
The Mavs will see only two sub-.500 opponents over that stretch, and both of those games are on the road. The other six games feature matchups against the top three teams in the West standings (Thunder, San Antonio Spurs and Portland Trail Blazers), a rematch with the Pacers and a visit to the Golden State Warriors that could have significant playoff-seeding implications.
“This stretch we’ve got coming up is pretty tough, a lot of good teams, some of them on the road, so it should be a good test,” Nowitzki said.