The Dallas Mavericks felt fortunate to get the victory.
Dirk Nowitzki had 38 points and Josh Howard made the go-ahead layup with 0.9 seconds left to give the Dallas Mavericks a 97-96 win over the Raptors yesterday in Toronto.
Toronto's Morris Peterson was told not to switch off Howard and cover Nowitzki during a timeout before the decisive play. But Peterson did, allowing Howard to make a wide-open layup to give Dallas the lead. Toronto's Anthony Parker missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
"We really didn't show up until the second quarter and then we were in a dogfight," Nowitzki said. "Obviously, we got a little lucky. Josh was open and made a hell of a finish."
Nowitzki had 11 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 blocks, and 2 steals for the Mavericks, winners of 17 of their last 18 games.
Chris Bosh had 24 points and 15 rebounds, but his turnover after winning a jump ball set up the Mavericks' last play with 6.5 seconds left. After the Mavericks inbounded the ball, Peterson converged on Nowitzki, allowing Howard to stand under the basket uncovered to receive Jason Terry's pass.
Toronto led nearly the entire game and by as many as 16 points.
Nuggets 109, Trail Blazers 93 -- Allen Iverson scored 32 points and Steve Blake added a career-high 25 against his former team, as Denver snapped a two-game losing streak with a victory in Portland.
A possible shootout goal by Denis Arkhipov, Chicago's third shooter, was disallowed after a video review. Minnesota goalie Manny Fernandez stopped the shot, then it nearly trickled over the goal line.
Minnesota won its third straight overall and on the road. Chicago lost its sixth straight.