Barea scores 22 for Mavericks in ragged win over Jazz
J.J. Barea scored 15 of his season-high 22 points in the third quarter and the Dallas Mavericks went into the All-Star break by holding on for a ragged 87-82 victory against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night.
Starting while Rajon Rondo recovers from a broken orbital bone, Barea got a mild surprise when Monta Ellis joined him in the backcourt a day after being called doubtful with a left hip injury.
Gordon Hayward was limited to 12 points for Utah and had two of his six turnovers in the closing minutes with the Jazz trying to rally for their first three-game winning streak in a year.
Trey Burke led Utah with 16 points.
Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki had 15 points and a season-high 14 rebounds.
Ellis wasn't much help offensively, scoring seven points while taking just six shots. But his presence was a boost because the Mavericks knew they would be without Rondo and center Tyson Chandler, who went out with a sprained left ankle 2 minutes before Ellis left early in the first quarter of a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday.
The Mavericks were up three in the closing seconds when Ellis lost the ball to Hayward, who went for the easy two points on a dunk with 15.3 seconds left instead of pulling up for a potential tying 3-pointer.
Utah fouled Ellis on the inbounds play, and he put the lead back at three before Hayward threw a pass behind Derrick Favors that led to a Dallas breakaway. The Mavericks ran off all but the last half-second before the Jazz could get another foul.
Nowitzki filled the void on the boards without Chandler, although the Mavericks were still outrebounded 52-38. Chandler Parsons was the defensive star without the 7-1 center patrolling the middle. He held Hayward to 5-of-14 shooting as the Jazz shot 38 percent and matched a season low with nine points in the first quarter.
Barea was the only Dallas scorer in double figures well into the fourth quarter after he had the last 13 points on a 15-3 run that turned a 43-42 Utah lead into a 57-46 advantage for the Mavericks, who shot 37 percent.
Steve Novak kept Utah close with a pair of 3-pointers in the fourth and finished with 12 points, and Favors had 14 points and three blocks.
Jazz: In the first quarter, the Jazz shot 20 percent and had more turnovers (five) than field goals (four). At one point in the second quarter, Utah had almost as many blocks (six) and buckets (eight). ... Utah's other nine-point quarter was in the fourth against Atlanta, a 100-97 loss on Nov. 12
Mavericks: Utah's nine points in the first quarter were the fewest Dallas has allowed in a quarter this season. The previous low was Philadelphia's 10 in the first quarter of the Mavericks' 123-70 win on Nov. 13. ... Bernard James, who just joined the team on a 10-day contract with Chandler out, had nine points, three rebounds and all three Dallas blocks.