Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series starts 11/27

Game 1: Monday, November 27th
Game 2: Saturday, February 3rd
Game 3: Tuesday, February 27th
Game 4: Wednesday, April 11th

Mavericks 91

(48-9, 21-6 away)

Timberwolves 65

(26-31, 17-12 home)

    Coverage: FSSW

    7:00 PM ET, February 27, 2007

    Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

    1 2 3 4 T
    DAL 26 16 26 2391
    MIN 19 8 26 1265

    Top Performers

    Dal: D. Nowitzki 23 Pts, 14 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Blk

    Min: K. Garnett 15 Pts, 13 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Howard bounces back, leads Mavs to 13th straight victory

    Associated Press

    MINNEAPOLIS -- The Dallas Mavericks established a franchise record for fewest points allowed. They also, for the first time in history, finished a month without being beaten.

    Elias Says

    The Mavericks won 91-65 in Minneapolis, and they are now 11-0 this season on the second day of back-to-back games. Dallas has five such games remaining this season; no NBA team has ever gone through a season losing fewer than two such games.

    The Mavericks succeeded in doing what no team had ever done to the Timberwolves: hold them below 30-percent shooting from the floor. Through their 18 seasons in the NBA, the Wolves had gone 1,418 games into their existence without a sub-30-percent clunker; impressive, yes, but not even halfway to the NBA record for such thing.

    •  Read more Elias Says

    It's only February, however, and they're not interested in flattery.

    Dirk Nowitzki had 23 points and 14 rebounds and Josh Howard rebounded from a sprained ankle suffered the night before to lead the Mavericks to their 13th straight victory on Tuesday night, 91-65 over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

    "Nobody's in here jumping up and down," said Jason Terry, who had 18 points and seven assists.

    Howard added 17 points, and Dallas raised its league-best record to 48-9.

    That wasn't all, though.

    The Mavericks, who improved to 11-0 on the second night of back-to-back games, went 10-0 in February. The 65 points managed by Minnesota was an all-time low for Dallas, breaking the previous mark of 68 for a team that was not too long ago derided as "Allas" -- as in no "D."

    Triple the Pleasure
    NBA teams with three separate 10-game win streaks in a single season (the '71-72 Lakers are not included as they won 33 straight games):
    1st Streak
    2nd Streak
    3rd Streak
    '06-07 Mavericks
    '99-00 Lakers
    '80-81 76ers
    '70-71 Bucks

    Coach Avery Johnson, in less than two years, has helped transform the Mavericks into a well-rounded bunch. They held Kevin Garnett and the lethargic Timberwolves to a franchise-worst 29.6 field-goal percentage on 24-for-81 shooting.

    Some of that stemmed from Minnesota's struggles, but Dallas is clearly a difficult club to play against at any spot on the floor. It has become just as difficult, however, to get the Mavericks to acknowledge their near-invincibility.

    "I can already count in my head about eight mistakes I had individually," Terry said.

    Garnett counted six mistakes by the Wolves on their first six possessions -- one blocked shot and five turnovers. They never had a lead in this one.

    "We don't have the experience nor the personnel to sort of get us in positions to climb ourselves out," said Garnett, who had 15 points and 13 rebounds. "We sometimes hang our hats on our youthfulness, and sometimes that's a disadvantage."

    Ricky Davis scored 15 points, and Mark Blount added 10 points for Minnesota, which matched a season low with an eight-point second quarter and trailed 42-27 at the half.

    Howard, who got hurt against the Hawks when he landed on the foot of Atlanta's Joe Johnson while following through on a jump shot, had 15 points on 6-for-7 shooting before halftime. The decision to play Howard wasn't made until shortly before tipoff, but it probably didn't matter if he suited up or not.

    Minnesota has lost 15 of its last 21 games. The chemistry and consistent effort that coach Randy Wittman, who took over for the fired Dwane Casey on Jan. 23, has searched for has not emerged.

    Randy Foye offered one of the hard-to-come-by highlights when he blocked Jerry Stackhouse's shot at the top of the key, started a fast break and swished a tricky reverse layup from underneath the basket that went almost straight up in the air.

    He was fouled by Stackhouse, and Foye's free throw cut the lead to 46-37 early in the third quarter. Just 23 seconds later, though, Terry swished a 26-footer to put Dallas back up by double digits.

    The crowd, announced at 13,326, was as quiet as ever despite the high-profile opponent. Late in the fourth quarter, one fan sitting in the pricey seats near midcourt screamed, "Can you at least get five guys out there who pretend like they want to win!?"

    The Wolves haven't played like it very much over the past month.

    "I don't think it's about our shooting. I think it's about pride, and that we don't have right now," said Marko Jaric, who went scoreless in 10 minutes. "We need to find it.

    Game notes

    Dallas was without defensive standout Greg Buckner for the second straight game because of a bruised left knee he sustained Saturday against Denver. Johnson said swingman Devean George, a native of Minneapolis, was getting close to returning from a sprained right knee. He's missed the last five games, but he might practice this week. ... Rashad McCants had four points in 18 minutes for Minnesota. Progress in his comeback from microfracture surgery on his right knee has been predictably slow. "This is an injury that we knew was going to take some time," Wittman said.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 91 65
    FGM-FGA 37-82 (.451) 24-81 (.296)
    3PM-3PA 8-20 (.400) 5-14 (.357)
    FTM-FTA 9-12 (.750) 12-15 (.800)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 14-54 10-39
    Assists 18 16
    Turnovers 17 16
    Steals 3 7
    Blocks 8 3
    Fast Break Points 5 9
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 18 (1/0) 18 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 28 0

    Top Performers

    Dirk Nowitzki Nowitzki
    Points: 23
    Reb: 14
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 1
    Kevin Garnett Garnett
    Points: 15
    Reb: 13
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 1