Barea, Nowitzki lead Mavericks past 76ers


DALLAS (AP) — With top scorer Dirk Nowitzki at less than full strength because of a sprained ankle, the Dallas Mavericks thrived with a more balanced approach.

Reserve J.J. Barea had a season-high 19 points, Nowitzki added 16, and Mavericks beat the Philadelphia 76ers 99-90 on Friday night for their third straight victory.

Nowitzki rolled his right ankle in the second quarter of Wednesday night’s win at Memphis, sitting out the final 3 minutes of the first half. He participated in Friday morning’s shootaround, and felt good enough to be in the starting lineup.

Nowitzki went 5 for 15 from the field with five fouls and three turnovers on a so-so night, but Shawn Marion had 16 points and Jason Terry 13 to help the Mavericks to their fifth victory in six games.

“We’ve got a deep team,” Barea said. “We’ve got a lot of guys who can score. We were still happy Dirk was out there, even if he’s on one leg.”

The Mavericks got big nights from their centers, with Brendan Haywood contributing 17 rebounds and Tyson Chandler providing 11 points and 12 boards before fouling out with 2:14 left.

“Right now they’ve got a tag-team thing going (at center) that’s helping us,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. “They’re getting a lot done. Haywood’s 17 rebounds is a monster number.”

Thaddeus Young scored 17 points and Spencer Hawes had a season-high 14 for Philadelphia. Andres Nocioni also scored 14 for the Sixers, who were unable to contend with the Mavericks’ center tandem.

“Their size killed us,” 76ers coach Doug Collins said. “Tyson Chandler and Brendan had 29 rebounds, 12 on the offensive backboards … it was the second shots that just wore us down.”

Jason Kidd recorded his 11,000th career assist with 9:51 left in the first quarter on Chandler’s alley-oop dunk, and the Mavericks carried a 31-22 lead into the second quarter.

“That’s a pass I enjoy,” said Kidd, who finished with 10 points and eight assists, giving him 11,007 for his career. “Tyson made a nice catch. He had the hard part. I’ve played with some guys who can put the ball in the basket. I’ve always enjoyed passing the ball.”

Kidd is second on the career assists list, trailing John Stockton’s 15,806.

Dallas held a 55-48 halftime advantage.

After trailing by as many as 10 in the first half, the Sixers tied it at 71 on Jrue Holiday’s layup with 2:25 left in the third quarter.

But Barea converted layups on consecutive possessions and Haywood hit a free throw with less than a second left in the third quarter to give the Mavericks a 78-75 edge.

Barea worked inside for two more short-range baskets during a 7-2 run to open the final quarter, extending Dallas’ advantage to 85-77. The Mavs went on to lead by as many as 14 down the stretch, coasting to their sixth straight home win over the Sixers.

“(Barea’s) penetration was key,” Carlisle said. “His minutes were vital to us winning the game because he made a lot of positive things happen. He hit big shots.”

Notes: Mavericks G/F Caron Butler (14.7 ppg., third on the team) missed his second consecutive game due to back spasms. … Sixers G/F Andre Iguodala was back in the starting lineup after sitting out two games with right Achilles’ tendinitis, scoring 13 points. … G Lou Williams remains in the Philadelphia rotation despite a separated left shoulder. … The Mavs have won eight of their last 10 against the 76ers.

Updated November 12, 2010