Jameer Nelson scores 21 but Magic’s losing streak grows to 8
DALLAS (AP) — Monta Ellis scored 21 points, Dirk Nowitzki added 15 and the Dallas Mavericks beat Orlando 107-88 Monday night, extending the Magic’s longest losing streak of the season to eight games.
The Mavericks won their third straight against sub-.500 teams since a blowout loss at San Antonio. Dallas now heads into a three-game stretch against Western Conference playoff contenders starting Wednesday at the Los Angeles Clippers.
Nowitzki did most of his damage in the first half with 10 points, two nights after scoring 20 in the third quarter on his way to a season-high 40 against New Orleans.
Jameer Nelson scored 21 and Glen Davis added 19 points and eight rebounds for the Magic, who got swept on a swing through five Western Conference cities and lost by an average of 20 points.
The Mavericks (23-16) moved seven games over .500 for the first time since the end of the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season.
Vince Carter, who had 17 points, was 3 of 4 from 3-point range and had consecutive 2-pointers in an 8-0 run that finally put Orlando away in the fourth quarter. The spurt included a long pass from Jae Crowder to Brandan Wright for a dunk that put Dallas up 97-82.
Jose Calderon scored 13, including a 3 at the shot-clock buzzer that gave the Mavericks their biggest lead of the first half at 58-36. The shot came after Ellis missed badly on a wild layup, but Wayne Ellington grabbed one of his season-high seven rebounds and found Calderon beyond the arc.
Orlando was playing its second straight game without leading scorer Arron Afflalo (strained right foot) and starting center Vic Vucevic, who was back in Florida after sustaining a concussion at the Los Angeles Clippers in the opener of the long road trip.
Nelson played despite injuring a finger in a loss at Denver two nights earlier.
The veteran guard’s supporting cast tried to keep the game close early in the second half, with Davis scoring the first six Orlando points after halftime as part of a 21-5 run that got the Magic to 63-57. Davis scored 12 during the run.
Calderon hit another 3-pointer to get the Dallas lead back to 13, and Ellis pulled up from long range with the shot clock running down to finish a 12-0 spurt that put the Mavericks up 75-57.
Ellington had a season-high 12 points.
NOTES: Mavericks F Shawn Marion sat out again with shoulder and rib injuries, and rookie point guard Shane Larkin was sidelined with a right ankle injury sustained Saturday against the Pelicans. … Magic F Maurice Harkless played despite a sore right knee and had 13 points and seven rebounds. … Nowitzki became the 24th player in NBA history with 1,400 3-pointers on a shot that put Dallas up 84-64 late in the third quarter.