Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 11/3

Game 1: Wednesday, November 3rd
Game 2: Wednesday, February 2nd
Game 3: Monday, February 28th
Game 4: Monday, March 21st

Mavericks 90

(30-14, 13-6 away)

Hornets 82

(8-37, 6-15 home)

    Coverage: COX

    7:00 PM ET, February 2, 2005

    Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA

    1 2 3 4 T
    DAL 25 29 23 1390
    NO 17 23 24 1882

    Top Performers

    Dallas: E. Dampier 11 Pts, 14 Reb, 1 Ast, 2 Blk

    New Orleans: D. Dickau 18 Pts, 3 Reb, 3 Ast, 2 Stl

    Mavericks hardly threatened

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- The tired and emotionally drained Dallas Mavericks were still far too deep and talented for the New Orleans Hornets.

    Dirk Nowitzki scored 20 points on an off-shooting night, and Jerry Stackhouse added 19 points to lead Dallas to a 90-82 victory Wednesday night.

    "We thought we had control of all the game," said Stackhouse, who had 24 points a night earlier in a comeback victory over Miami. "It was just inevitable we were going to have somewhat of a letdown, but I thought we did a good job of not doing that when it mattered."

    New Orleans' last hope of getting back in the game came after the Hornets had trimmed their deficit, once as large as 21, to 13 midway through fourth quarter. Then Stackhouse buried an 18-foot fade with hands in his face to make it 85-70. Nowitzki followed with a 17-footer and the game was all but over.

    "I'm really proud of our team tonight. It's a tough back-to-back situation which we don't make excuses for," said interim coach Avery Johnson, filling in while Don Nelson recovers from rotator cuff surgery.

    Erick Dampier had 11 points and 14 rebounds, one night after battling Shaquille O'Neal -- a matchup that left O'Neal embittered and calling Dampier "soft."

    "Dampier is really coming on for us. He's just keeping it really simple. He's doing basically what we brought him to do," Johnson said. "I think he was a little fatigued, you know, banging against Shaq and Eddie Jones and (Dwyane) Wade last night and then have to come here ... that would take a lot out of anybody."

    Michael Finley and Devin Harris each scored 12 points. Harris, hardly looking like the rookie he is, scored from beyond the 3-point arc and also exploded into the lane for a one-handed dunk.

    Dallas led by double digits for much of the game, including all but the last half-minute of the second half.

    Stackhouse was 6-of-11 from the field and 7-of-8 from the foul line. He dunked twice and hit a variety of jumpers.

    Had the Hornets not acquired Dan Dickau from Dallas in a trade Dec. 3, the game could have been even uglier. Dickau was the only Hornet scoring with regularity, finishing with a team-high 18.

    Dickau was acquired for Darrell Armstrong, who often started for New Orleans because of Baron Davis' injuries. But Johnson elected not to play Armstrong in the veteran point guard's first visit to New Orleans since the trade.

    "Dallas has so many weapons," Dickau said. "They make good decisions. It's not always the first penetration (of a possession) that leads to baskets. It's the second and third."

    Jackson Vroman added 11 points off the bench for New Orleans, while fellow reserves Chris Andersen and Casey Jacobsen each scored 10. P.J. Brown had 12 rebounds.

    "Our defense was definitely soft," Brown said. "Defense sets the tone. We are starting to let teams shoot again. When we start playing good defense again, we'll play better."

    The Mavericks shot 51.4 percent while holding the Hornets to 37.5 percent in the first half. The Mavericks showed no drop off when bringing in reserves Stackhouse, Harris and Alan Henderson, who combined for 25 points during the first two quarters, compared to 28 for the Hornets starters. The Mavericks took a 54-40 lead into halftime, then opened the third period with three straight scores, including Nowitzki's steal and driving layup as he was fouled, putting the Mavs up 61-40.

    Game notes

    Hornets coach Byron Scott, a former Lakers guard, said there was no basis for talk of him leaving New Orleans to replace the resigning Rudy Tomjanovich in Los Angeles. "I have no interest whatsoever," Scott said. "I'm extremely happy where I am." Scott is 8-37 in his first season with New Orleans. His contract pays him a little more than $10 million over three seasons. ... The Hornets have lost 11 straight to Dallas. ... With the Hornets struggling on defense, George Lynch was subbed into the game in the first quarter for his first action in 10 games. ... Andersen had five blocks. He has at least one block in 17 straight games.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 90 82
    FGM-FGA 32-71 (.451) 29-75 (.387)
    3PM-3PA 3-8 (.375) 4-13 (.308)
    FTM-FTA 23-28 (.821) 20-26 (.769)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-36 15-46
    Assists 21 18
    Turnovers 13 15
    Steals 8 8
    Blocks 6 6
    Fast Break Points 16 16
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 24 (0/0) 22 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 21 0

    Top Performers

    New Orleans
    Erick Dampier Dampier
    Points: 11
    Reb: 14
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 2
    Dan Dickau Dickau
    Points: 18
    Reb: 3
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0