Mavs cruise past T-Wolves
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) – Austin Croshere led a balanced Dallas
scoring attack with 19 points as the Mavericks cruised to a 105-88 victory
Jason Terry and Josh Howard each scored 16 points and Devean George had 14 for
the Mavericks, who have already clinched the best record in the league and
home-court advantage throughout the NBA playoffs.
Jerry Stackhouse (sore knee), Erick Dampier (strained right shoulder) and Dirk
Nowitzki (sore left ankle) each had the night off for Dallas.
Center DeSagana Diop got a rare start and finished with 10 points
and 15 rebounds for the Mavs, who won their franchise-record 30th road win of
Justin Reed scored 17 points off the bench and Mike James and Craig Smith each
had 14 for the Timberwolves, who have dropped seven of their last nine.
Minnesota was without the services of all-star Kevin Garnett, who is out
indefinitely with an injured right quadriceps.
After a tight first half, Dallas blew the game open with a dominating third
quarter. With the score knotted at 63-63 with 6 1/2 minutes left in the third,
Howard and Terry nailed back-to-back threes before Howard converted a
traditional three-point play to put Dallas up 72-63.
A James’ three-point play brought Minnesota back within six, but Maurice Ager,
Jose Barea and George each answered with treys to make it 81-66 with just over
a minute to play. Croshere then hit a pair of free throws and Barea hit
another three to hand the Mavericks a 86-66 lead heading into the fourth.
Minnesota never seriously threatened in the final quarter as Dallas cruised to
its 65th win of the season.
The score was tied 23-23 after the opening 12 minutes and the Timberwolves
took a slim 51-48 lead into the locker room.
Barea finished with 13 points off the bench for Dallas…Minnesota center Mark
Blount posted 10 points and 10 rebounds…Dallas outrebounded Minnesota,