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Mavericks 95, Jazz 83

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SALT LAKE CITY — Forward Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points and moved into the No. 10 spot on the NBA’s all-time scoring list Tuesday in the Dallas Mavericks’ 95-83 victory over the Utah Jazz at EnergySolutions Arena.

The Mavericks took a 39-25 lead after hitting 16 of 17 field goals (94.1 percent) in the first quarter and were never threatened by the Jazz after that.

Nowitzki hit 9 of 11 shots for the Mavericks, who wrapped up a 4-0 road trip.

The win pushed Dallas (48-31) to within one game of idle Golden State (48-29) for the sixth spot in the Western Conference playoff standings. Phoenix (46-31) trails No. 7 Dallas by one full game, while Memphis (45-32) remains on the outside looking in.

Nowitzki needed 18 points to replace Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson (26,710) in the 10th position of the NBA’s scoring list. The Dallas forward has 26,714 points in 16 seasons and finds himself behind former Houston great Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946), although he’d have to score more than 200 points in the Mavs’ final three games to catch the Rocket legend this season.

Guard Monta Ellis scored 16 points, while forward Shawn Marion, center Samuel Dalembert and guard Jose Calderon each chipped in 10 points. Dallas cooled off to shoot 55.6 percent for the game, scoring just 34 points in the second half.

Center Derrick Favors scored 19 points and backup big man Enes Kanter hauled in a season-high 19 rebounds with 15 points for the Jazz.

Utah fell to 24-54 after losing for the 18th time in 20 games.

The Jazz shot just 41.4 percent, including a rough 4-of-24 outing from beyond the arc.

Dallas went ahead by as many as 20 points before Utah turned it on late with a 13-4 run. The Jazz pulled within nine points, 92-83, with 1:59 remaining on a three-point play by Favors, but couldn’t get any closer.

After winning twice in Los Angeles — against the Lakers and Clippers — and beating the Kings and Jazz, Dallas returns home for important home games against San Antonio (Thursday) and Phoenix (Saturday). The Mavs finish the regular season next Wednesday at Memphis.

NOTES: Dallas F Dirk Nowitzki has long been a player Jazz fans have loved to hate, in part because he once said “Utah is a bad city” during a playoff series against John Stockton and Karl Malone. Years later, Nowitzki explained that before Game 1, he saw a sign that read, “Germany is a bad city.” When asked why the Mavericks returned to Dallas between games in Utah, Nowitzki told the Dallas Morning News at Tuesday’s shootaround, “Well, Utah is a bad city, meaning it’s the playoffs and we shouldn’t spend too much time there, it’s hostile. I meant going home sleeping in my own bed is never bad. I come back here and they blew the whole thing up. They were talking about it on the TV that night already. I mean, they were trying to call my hotel room. It was awesome. … Every time I touched the ball to shoot during warm-ups, they were booing. So that was a good ole time.” … Jazz F Marvin Williams underwent an MRI that revealed he has a left knee bone bruise. The forward played for eight minutes in the first half Tuesday before heading to the training room and did not return because of the injury. … Jazz F Jeremy Evans displayed portraits that he painted in the concourse at this game. Included in the collection was the painting he leaped over in the 2013 Dunk Contest.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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