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Mavericks Vs. Thunder: Nowitzki Leads Dallas Into Oklahoma City

(Sports Network) - The Oklahoma City are back at full strength and shoot for their sixth straight win tonight versus the just-as-tough Dallas Mavericks.

The Thunder have won five in a row and seven of eight games, and had all their stars back on the floor in Monday's 117-107 home win versus the Minnesota Timberwolves. Reigning scoring champion Kevin Durant was back from a two-game absence because of a balky ankle and logged 28 points, eight rebounds and five assists.

Forward Jeff Green had missed four straight and seven of the previous eight games with an ankle injury, and recorded 24 points and six rebounds for the Thunder, who got 20 points and 14 assists from Russell Westbrook. Thabo Sefolosha had a double-double with 13 points and 11 boards in the win.

"We pulled it out as our guys made the plays at the end," said Oklahoma City head coach Scott Brooks. "We picked up the intensity on defense in the fourth quarter, scrambling, playing tough, physical defense."

Dallas has been just dominant this season and aims for its third straight win Wednesday night. Superstar Dirk Nowitzki led the Mavs to an 88-84 victory versus Detroit Tuesday night with a season-high 42 points and 12 rebounds.

Jason Terry notched 16 points and Caron Butler contributed 11 points and eight rebounds for the Mavericks, who have won six of eight games.

"We really had to grind this one out," said Nowitzki. "It wasn't pretty for awhile and we were down 10 or more and we fought back and really executed down the stretch."

The Mavericks will visit rival San Antonio after their visit to OKC.

Dallas forward Shawn Marion (illness) was not at the team's shootaround on Tuesday and had four points in less than 16 minutes against the Pistons. He is questionable for this evening's road bout.

Oklahoma City and Dallas split four meetings a year ago, but the Mavericks are 21-6 in the previous 27 contests in the series.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.