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Mavs Win Eighth Straight

(Sports Network) – Dirk Nowitzki made 12-of-18 shots from the floor en route to 26 points, as the Dallas Mavericks used a big second half to take down the Utah Jazz, 93-81, at EnergySolutions Arena.

Nowitzki also pulled down six rebounds for the Mavericks, who have won eight in a row. Caron Butler and Jason Kidd added 16 and 15 points, respectively. Kidd also dished out seven assists for Dallas, which improved to 7-1 away from Big D this season.

The Mavericks outscored Utah, 54-38, in the second half.

“I thought we played well,” Dallas head coach Rick Carlisle said. “The first half we were a bit sluggish, thought we let their activity get to us a little bit, and the second half we just played with a lot more attitude, but you have to here. So it’s a great win for us. We don’t have much time to relax, we got to go to Sacramento and play tomorrow.”

Paul Millsap had 21 points and seven rebounds to pace the Jazz, who saw a seven-game winning streak come to an end. Al Jefferson tallied 18 points and eight boards for Utah, which got 12 points, seven assists and five rebounds from Deron Williams.

Down by five, 46-41, early in the third quarter, Dallas went on a 11-2 run to take the lead. Kidd’s 23-foot jumper gave the Mavericks a 52-48 edge with 6:55 left.

The remainder of the third was a hard-fought battle that resulted in Dallas holding a 66-62 margin.

The Mavericks dominated the fourth to put the game away. Jason Terry sparked a 17-4 quarter-opening surge with a jumper. He then capped the burst with a slam to give the visitors an 83-66 advantage with 6:16 to play.

Utah never got closer than 12 the rest of the way.

“(Dallas) came out and beat us in the second half,” Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan said. “They really pushed the ball up the floor and we had a tough time getting back on defense and try and cover. We also missed some free throws and their bench outscored us 34-23 and that was kind of a problem. They have a lot of good, veteran players who would start on a lot of teams.”

The Jazz led by as many as six in the first quarter, but Dallas scored the final seven points of the period to take a 23-20 lead.

After Shawn Marion hit a jumper to start the second stanza, Utah went on a 10-2 run to go in front. Kyrylo Fesenko tallied five points during the surge, including a jumper with 7:40 remaining for a 30-27 edge.

Williams made a three-pointer and two free throws around a Butler free throw for a 41-34 lead with 1:44 to go. It was 43-39 heading into the locker room.

Game Notes

Utah took two of three meetings with the Mavericks a season ago. Dallas was winless in its previous five visits to Salt Lake City…The Jazz fell to 2-1 on a six-game homestand. Utah will also host the Grizzlies, Heat and Magic on the residency…Dallas shot 52.6 percent from the field, while Utah made 39.2 percent of its shots…The Jazz went 20-of-30 from the charity stripe…Terry had 12 points off the bench.

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