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NBA  FINAL            1ST  2ND  3RD  4TH  TOTAL
                      ---  ---  ---  ---  -----
     DALLAS           24   22   37   21    104  
     HOUSTON          27   26   16   12    81      FINAL

HIGH SCORERS:   DAL - DIRK NOWITZKI 34, MICHAEL FINLEY 29, 
                      RAEF LAFRENTZ 12
                HOU - YAO MING 20, CUTTINO MOBLEY 13, TWO 
                      PLAYERS WITH 10

HIGH REBOUND:   DAL - SHAWN BRADLEY 9, MICHAEL FINLEY 7, DIRK 
                      NOWITZKI 6
                HOU - YAO MING 9, EDDIE GRIFFIN 6, THREE 
                      PLAYERS WITH 5

HIGH ASSISTS:   DAL - STEVE NASH 5, DIRK NOWITZKI 5, TWO 
                      PLAYERS WITH 4
                HOU - STEVE FRANCIS 5, EDDIE GRIFFIN 5, 
                      CUTTINO MOBLEY 3

Box Score

DALLAS (104) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp R Bell 28 0-2 0-0 1-4 3 5 0 D Nowitzki 38 11-20 9-10 0-6 5 0 34 R LaFrentz 13 5-6 0-0 2-4 2 4 12 S Nash 27 4-10 0-0 1-1 5 2 10 M Finley 40 8-14 6-6 1-7 4 2 29 W Williams 16 2-6 0-0 0-4 1 2 5 N Van Exel 24 3-9 2-2 0-2 4 0 8 S Bradley 24 0-5 0-0 2-9 0 3 0 A Rigaudeau 11 1-6 0-0 0-0 0 1 2 A Griffin 10 1-4 0-0 2-3 0 1 2 A Johnson 5 1-2 0-0 0-0 1 0 2 P Jones 4 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 2 0 _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 36-85 17-18 9-40 25 22 104 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.424, FT-.944. 3-Point Goals: 15-32, .469 (D Nowitzki 3-8, R LaFrentz 2-3, S Nash 2-4, M Finley 7-10, W Williams 1-4, N Van Exel 0-2, A Rigaudeau 0-1). Team Rebounds: 8. Blocked Shots:10 (S Bradley 6, R LaFrentz 2, D Nowitzki 2). Turnovers:12 (D Nowitzki 3, N Van Exel 2, R LaFrentz 2, W Williams, M Finley, R Bell, A Griffin, P Jones). Steals: 11 (S Bradley 2, S Nash 2, A Rigaudeau 2, D Nowitzki 2, N Van Exel, R Bell, M Finley). HOUSTON (81) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp J Posey 34 5-10 0-0 0-3 1 4 10 E Griffin 26 3-10 0-0 2-6 5 3 7 Y Ming 31 7-9 6-7 2-9 2 1 20 S Francis 35 2-13 6-7 0-5 5 1 10 C Mobley 39 5-11 3-3 1-3 3 4 13 K Cato 12 1-3 0-0 2-5 0 0 2 M Taylor 17 2-7 1-1 2-5 0 3 5 M Norris 24 2-5 4-4 1-4 2 0 8 T Morris 7 1-3 0-0 0-0 1 0 2 J Hawkins 5 1-2 0-0 0-0 0 0 2 B Nachbar 5 0-2 0-0 0-1 1 2 0 J Collier 5 1-2 0-0 0-1 0 0 2 _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 30-77 20-22 10-42 20 18 81 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.390, FT-.909. 3-Point Goals: 1-9, .111 (J Posey 0-1, E Griffin 1-3, S Francis 0-4, C Mobley 0-1). Team Rebounds: 9. Blocked Shots:4 (S Francis, J Hawkins, B Nachbar, Y Ming). Turnovers:18 (Y Ming 4, C Mobley 3, M Norris 2, M Taylor 2, J Posey 2, S Francis 2, K Cato, J Hawkins, B Nachbar). Steals: 9 (C Mobley 3, S Francis 3, J Posey 2, B Nachbar). -------------------------------------------- DALLAS 24 22 37 21 - 104 HOUSTON 27 26 16 12 - 81 -------------------------------------------- Technical fouls: Dallas - 2 (Defensive Three, 0:51 3rd; R Bell, 9:03 3rd). Houston - 1 (S Francis, 9:03 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 16,285. T: 2:24. Officials: Blane Reichelt, Hue Hollins, Ron Olesiak.


Extended Box

DALLAS (104) AT HOUSTON (81) DALLAS REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === R BELL F 28 0-2 0-0 1 3 4 3 5 1 1 0 D NOWITZKI F 38 11-20 9-10 0 6 6 5 0 2 3 34 R LAFRENTZ C 13 5-6 0-0 2 2 4 2 4 0 2 12 S NASH G 27 4-10 0-0 1 0 1 5 2 2 0 10 M FINLEY G 40 8-14 6-6 1 6 7 4 2 1 1 29 W WILLIAMS 16 2-6 0-0 0 4 4 1 2 0 1 5 N VAN EXEL 24 3-9 2-2 0 2 2 4 0 1 2 8 S BRADLEY 24 0-5 0-0 2 7 9 0 3 2 0 0 A RIGAUDEAU 11 1-6 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 A GRIFFIN 10 1-4 0-0 2 1 3 0 1 0 1 2 A JOHNSON 5 1-2 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 P JONES 4 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 0 TOTALS 240 36-85 17-18 9 31 40 25 22 11 12 104 (.424) (.944) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 12 (14 PTS) HOUSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === J POSEY F 34 5-10 0-0 0 3 3 1 4 2 2 10 E GRIFFIN F 26 3-10 0-0 2 4 6 5 3 0 0 7 Y MING C 31 7-9 6-7 2 7 9 2 1 0 4 20 S FRANCIS G 35 2-13 6-7 0 5 5 5 1 3 2 10 C MOBLEY G 39 5-11 3-3 1 2 3 3 4 3 3 13 K CATO 12 1-3 0-0 2 3 5 0 0 0 1 2 M TAYLOR 17 2-7 1-1 2 3 5 0 3 0 2 5 M NORRIS 24 2-5 4-4 1 3 4 2 0 0 2 8 T MORRIS 7 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 J HAWKINS 5 1-2 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 B NACHBAR 5 0-2 0-0 0 1 1 1 2 1 1 0 J COLLIER 5 1-2 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 TOTALS 240 30-77 20-22 10 32 42 20 18 9 18 81 (.390) (.909) TEAM REBS: 9 TOTAL TO: 18 (26 PTS) DALLAS 24 22 37 21 - 104 HOUSTON 27 26 16 12 - 81 BLOCKED SHOTS: DALLAS - S BRADLEY 6, R LAFRENTZ 2, D NOWITZKI 2. HOUSTON - S FRANCIS, J HAWKINS, B NACHBAR, Y MING. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: DALLAS 15-32 (.469), D NOWITZKI 3-8, R LAFRENTZ 2- 3, S NASH 2-4, M FINLEY 7-10, W WILLIAMS 1-4, N VAN EXEL 0-2, A RIGAUDEAU 0- 1. HOUSTON 1-9 (.111), J POSEY 0-1, E GRIFFIN 1-3, S FRANCIS 0-4, C MOBLEY 0- 1. TECHNICAL FOULS: DALLAS - DEFENSIVE THREE, R BELL. HOUSTON - S FRANCIS. FLAGRANT FOULS: NONE. OFFICIALS: BLANE REICHELT, HUE HOLLINS, RON OLESIAK. A - 16,285. T - 2:24.


Game Story

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Dirk Nowitzki scored 34 points and Michael Finley added 29 with a career-high seven 3-pointers as the Dallas Mavericks overwhelmed the Houston Rockets in the second half en route to a 104-81 victory. Trailing 53-46 at halftime, the Mavericks outscored the Rockets by a 37-16 margin in the third quarter and held them to 28 points in the second half. "We had a good talk at the break," Nowitzki said. "They just had way too many easy points in the first half, and too many offensive boards. But we really started hitting some threes." Finley, not chosen for the All-Star Game despite averaging 19.7 points for the NBA's best team, scored 18 points in the third period. He hit four of Dallas' eight 3-pointers in the quarter as the Mavs went 15-of-32 from the arc overall. "I'm not here hold grudges for not being selected," Finley said. "I felt that I was deserving, but it's more important for me to help get wins for the team." Rookie Yao Ming, who is going to the All-Star Game, scored 20 points for Houston, but was held scoreless after his free throws gave the Rockets their final lead at 64-63 with 7:52 left in the third quarter. The Mavs went up for good 19 seconds later on a 3-pointer by Raef LaFrentz that touched off a 17-2 run. Spurred on by its barrage in the third quarter, Dallas matched its own Compaq Center high in 3-pointers set in 1995. The Mavs were 8-of-14 from behind the arc in the third. "We were just beautiful in the second half," Mavericks coach Don Nelson said. "We really started to wake up and make some threes." "It's pretty unbelievable," Yao said through an interpreter. "They shoot a lot of threes, score a lot, and we have to be prepared for that. Our biggest problem was on offense in the second half, Our shooting percentage went down and we couldn't get any rebounds." After LaFrentz's 3-pointer gave Dallas a 66-64 lead, Finley tallied 12 of the next 14 points. His 3-pointer with 3:10 to play gave the Mavericks an 80-66 bulge. "Finley was amazing. It was fun to watch him out there tonight," Nowitzki said. "He really carried us when we needed it." LaFrentz scored 12 points and Steve Nash added 10 for Dallas, which shot 42 percent (36-of-85) from the field. The Mavericks posted their fourth win in their last five and clinched the season series against Houston for the first time since the 1991-92 campaign. Cuttino Mobley netted 13 points while James Posey and Steve Francis each added 10 for Houston. Francis shot a miserable 2-of-13 from the field. "It's hard to stay focused when shots are going down like that," Francis said. "As much as people are going to say we didn't play defense, our hands were in their face and they were just knocking them down, big time." The Rockets' awful second half followed an excellent first half. Yao scored 16 points as Houston hit half its 40 shots en route to a 53-46 edge at the break. "The first half was the best we had all year," Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich said. "We had good shots and created good situations. We followed the game plan, both offensively and defensively. "In the second half, we came out and Dallas spaced the floor to take the threes," he continued. "It was a barrage, and they made the shots. Now we see why they have the record that they have." But the combination of a double-team on Yao and the Mavericks' 3-point onslaught proved unsettling in the second half, forcing Houston to shoot 27 percent (10-of-27).


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