MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Two games back from injuries, neither Dirk
Nowitzki nor Michael Finley showed signs of pain.
Nowitzki, battling a sore left knee, had 29 points and nine
rebounds to lead the Dallas Mavericks past the Milwaukee Bucks
112-110 Friday night. Finley, also just back from injury, added 19
"Two warriors," said Dallas assistant coach Avery Johnson,
filling in for Don Nelson, who was with his wife following surgery.
"They gave us 40 minutes each, both of them coming off some
"They did a good job of being captains tonight."
Jason Terry tied his season high with 28 points for Dallas,
which had lost 20 of 23 games at Milwaukee during the franchise's
Michael Redd led Milwaukee with 33 points, but missed a fadeaway
jumper with 2 seconds left that would have tied the game.
Finley had missed three games with a left calf contusion, and
Nowitzki had missed two. Both returned Thursday in a loss to the
"That's a tough team, a tough tandem," Redd said. "You have a
seven-footer who can shoot and handle the ball the way he does and
Michael Finley to complement him so well. They have a great future
Two free throws by Nowitzki with 18.7 seconds left put Dallas up
111-108 and helped seal the victory.
Finley hit a 3-pointer to tie the game at 102 with less than 3
minutes remaining. A layup by Redd with 2:41 left put Milwaukee
back on top, but Nowitzki responded with a layup and free throw of
his own to give Dallas a 105-104 lead.
Milwaukee would not lead again, but had its chances.
Redd missed a 17-footer with 21 seconds left that would have
given Milwaukee the lead, and saw his 18-foot jumper over Darrell
Armstrong come up short to end it.
A night after shooting 36.7 percent in the 100-95 loss to the
Lakers, Dallas made its first six field goals and shot 50.6 percent
for the game.
Terry made 11 of 17 shots.
"He came out aggressive, took advantage of the pick-and-roll
game and made big shots for them," Redd said. "He just had a huge
Dallas has given up 100 points in 12 of its last 16 games, but
Johnson challenged the team to play better defense after the loss
to the Lakers.
"You've got teams battling for playoff position," Terry said.
"We're trying to hold our ground. It's desperation out there.
Every play counts, every free throw, every box out, every blocked
"Everything is on the line."
Dallas' bad luck with injuries continued early in the first
quarter, when Josh Howard sprained his left ankle. He did not
Besides Nowitzki and Finley, Dallas has been without center
Erick Dampier (right foot stress fracture) the past 10 games.
Howard is listed as day-to-day. ... Dallas had just eight
turnovers. ... Devin Harris played 25 minutes and scored nine
points, including a highlight reel no-look layup and a free throw
in the third quarter. It was Harris' first game in the state since
leaving the University of Wisconsin early for the NBA draft in