Rockets 116, Mavericks 108, OT
A second-quarter collision between Dallas star Dirk Nowitzki and Houston's Carl Landry knocked both players out of the game.
The trade-off worked out in the Rockets' favor.
Kyle Lowry came off the bench for a career-high 26 points and 10 assists, and the Rockets took advantage of the second-half absence of Dallas' top scorer to beat the Mavericks 116-108 in overtime Friday night.
Aaron Brooks added 25 points, nine in overtime, and Luis Scola contributed 19 points and 10 rebounds to help the Rockets end the Mavericks' five-game winning streak.
The Rockets wasted a 10-point lead over the final three minutes of regulation, but they regained their focus in overtime and went on to win for the fourth time in six games.
``We were on a low going into the overtime,'' Brooks said. ``The teams that have momentum normally win overtime, but we did a great job of regrouping and playing through our mistakes. We made a lot of mistakes in that fourth quarter, but luckily we came out with the victory.''
J.J. Barea matched his season high with 23 points, and Josh Howard and Shawn Marion each had 17 points for the Mavericks.
Landry was taken to an emergency room for treatment after breaking several teeth in a second-quarter collision near the basket with Nowitzki.
Nowitzki drove into the lane and missed a short jumper with 9:28 left before halftime. He was fouled by Landry, who was hit in the mouth by Nowitzki's elbow.
Before going to the locker room for X-rays and stitches to close a cut on his right elbow, Nowitzki, who is right-handed, made one of the two free throws he shot with his left.
The Mavericks listed Nowitzki as questionable for Sunday night's home game against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Landry, who started the night averaging 16.6 points, scored two points in seven minutes and is day-to-day.
``Carl is our big guy off the bench and he wasn't here tonight,'' Lowry said. ``Hopefully all's well with him, but that's what our team is, we're a complete team. We don't have the superstar name...''
Dallas' Jason Kidd and Andersen were both assessed technical fouls after exchanging shoves with 6:53 left. Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle was also assessed a technical on the play, and Lowry connected on the free throw to cap an 8-0 run that gave the Rockets an 89-81 lead.
Erick Dampier of the Mavericks also received a technical with 4:35 remaining, and Lowry's free throw extended Houston's edge to 95-85. Nowitzki, who leads the Mavs with 26.9 points a game, was finished after scoring five points in 10 minutes.
With Nowitzki out, the Mavericks lacked a go-to scorer in overtime.
``When a big star like Dirk is out, we've got to step up and we didn't do a good job of that,'' Barea said.
Brooks' 3-pointer with 3:18 left in overtime gave Houston the lead for good, 106-104. Lowry added a pair of free throws and Brooks hit a short jumper with 1:19 remaining to extend the advantage to 110-104.
``It was a perfect win on the road for us, with everything that went on,'' Rockets coach Rick Adelman said. ``Our guys struggled at the end of regulation, but they had a nice overtime, so it was a really good win.''
Dallas pulled to 99-97 with 1:00 remaining in regulation on Marion's layup.
Brooks converted one of two free throws with 19 seconds left to give the Rockets a 100-97 edge, but Tim Thomas' 3-pointer out of the left corner with 10.5 seconds in regulation tied it for the Mavericks.
Brooks drove hard to the basket for the win in regulation, but he lost the ball out of bounds with less than a second left. Marion's attempt to score off an alley-oop inbound pass fell short at the regulation buzzer.
``We went down fighting,'' Marion said. ``There was a lot going on. It was a heated game that we could have won.''
After the Nowitzki-Landry collision, the Rockets went on an 18-5 run and held a 49-41 halftime lead.
NOTES: Carlisle and Dallas' Erick Dampier received their second technical fouls of the night late in overtime and were ejected. Dallas finished with six technicals and Houston had one. ... More than an hour after the game, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said his team was protesting the game because the referees had made ``multiple misapplications of the rules'' regarding the technical fouls in overtime. ... The Southwest Division rivals will complete their four-game season series on Dec. 31. ... Tracy McGrady scored two points in seven minutes. McGrady was inactive for the first 23 games while recovering from microfracture surgery on his left knee in February. McGrady has played less than eight minutes in each of the three games.