Mavericks top Celtics for 3rd straight win
DALLAS -- Dirk Nowitzki scored 19 points and Monta Ellis added 17 as Dallas survived a late rally by visiting Boston to pick up its third straight win, 94-89.
Devin Harris produced 12 points and six assists off the bench and Shawn Marion had 11 points and six rebounds for the Mavericks, who moved within a game of idle Golden State in their push for sixth place in the Western Conference. Brandan Wright chipped in 10 points on 5-of-5 shooting, including a critical putback in the final minute.
Jerryd Bayless scored 12 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter to lead the late charge by the Celtics. Kelly Olynyk scored 16 points and Jared Sullinger added 13, both of them contributing nine rebounds.
Bayless and Avery Bradley hit consecutive 3-pointers to cut a 12-point fourth-quarter deficit in half and Bayless had a fadeaway with 2:39 to go that pulled the Celtics within a basket. After Olynyk answered Wright's big basket with a putback of his own, Bradley picked Ellis clean and went in for a dunk to make it 90-89 with 21.6 seconds remaining, but Ellis made two free throws on the other end and Marion did the same following a Bayless miss to seal it.
The Celtics had a 13-0 run early in the second quarter that helped them stay within seven points at halftime and a 12-0 burst to end the third that cut the Mavericks' lead to 64-61. Olynyk's 3-pointer got Boston within 70-66 with 8:32 left in the game before Harris hit Wright for an alley-oop and Nowitzki threw down a slam in transition to spark a surge that put Dallas up 78-66 midway through the fourth.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Celtics PG Rajon Rondo did not play, continuing his practice of sitting out the second half of back-to-backs. ... C Kris Humphries hauled in 14 rebounds to help Boston secure a 57-36 advantage on the glass. ... Dallas improved to 20-9 overall against the East, while the Celtics fell to 0-15 on the road against teams from the West.