By NBA.com staff reports
Posted Jan 15 2009 6:04AM
Chris Paul was facing the master of the triple-double on Wednesday night and he nearly did Jason Kidd one better.
With 33 points, 11 assists, 10 rebounds and seven steals, Paul narrowly missed a rare quadruple-double, but it was still enough to pull the New Orleans Hornets to a 104-97 victory over the slumping Dallas Mavericks.
"It seemed like he was everywhere,'' said Dallas' Antoine Wright, Paul's primary defender much of the night instead of Kidd. "He made all the right plays, all the big shots.''
The Mavericks dared Paul to beat them, and he did, taking advantage of single coverage by hitting open jumper after open jumper -- when he wasn't turning steals into layups, or dishing to open teammates. For instance, he set up James Posey for a 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter that put New Orleans ahead for good. A rebound the last half-minute clinched his fourth triple-double of the season.
"Every night I just try to take what the defense gives me and tonight, they were going under ball screens and forcing me to shoot, so that's what I had to do,'' Paul said.
Hornets coach Byron Scott was surprised the Mavericks relied on a bigger guy like Wright to try staying with Paul. He wasn't surprised that Paul exploited it, especially with New Orleans coming off an ugly home loss and a 2-3 rut that cost it first place in the strong Southwest Division.
"You don't expect a triple-double every night and you don't expect him to have seven steals, either, but it was one of those games where he was all over the place,'' Scott said.
"He's a very special player.''
|We have got you covered with all of Wednesday's NBA action in The Daily Zap.
Chicago 102, Toronto 98
Indiana 110, Detroit 106, OT
Philadelphia 100, Portland 79
Boston 118, New Jersey 86
New York 128, Washington 122
Miami 102, Milwaukee 99
Oklahoma City 114, Utah 93
New Orleans 104, Dallas 97
San Antonio 112, L.A. Lakers 111
Atlanta 97, L.A. Clippers 80
Sacramento 135, Golden State 133
• Chris Paul, Hornets, had 33 points, 11 assists, 10 rebounds and seven steals in New Orleans' 104-97 victory in Dallas.
• John Salmons, Kings, hit a 17-footer with 1.6 seconds remaining in the third overtime and finished with 25 points, a career-best 14 rebounds and seven assists in Sacramento's 135-133 triple-overtime victory at Golden State.
• David Lee, Knicks, had 30 points and 10 rebounds in New York's 128-122 home victory over Washington.
• Andre Iguodala, 76ers, had a season-high 29 points in Philadelphia's 110-79 win over visiting Portland.
• Manu Ginobili and Roger Mason, Spurs. Ginobili scored 27 points, and Mason completed a three-point play with 10 seconds left in San Antonio's 112-111 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.
• Derrick Rose, Bulls, scored 17 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter and added 10 assists in Chicago's 102-98 victory at Toronto.
• Danny Granger, Pacers, scored 24 points and made the tying shot with 3.9 seconds left in regulation in Indiana's 110-106 overtime win over Detroit.
• Daequan Cook, Heat, hit six 3-pointers and had a career-high 24 points in Miami's 102-99 victory in Milwaukee.
• Paul Pierce, Celtics, scored 18 of his 22 points in the third quarter in Boston's 118-86 win over visiting New Jersey.
• Josh Smith, Hawks, had 26 points in Atlanta's 97-80 road win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
Boston beat New Jersey 118-86 on Wednesday night for its third straight victory. After opening 27-2 for the best 29-game start in NBA history, the Celtics went 2-7 before starting their current winning streak. ... Philadelphia has won five straight. ... The Los Angeles Clippers have a 12-game losing streak.
Andrea Bargnani had a career-high 31 points and finished with 10 rebounds in Toronto's 102-98 loss to Chicago on Wednesday night. ... Oklahoma is 4-4 in its last eight games to improve to 7-33.
"It was almost like pickup basketball. We were talking at halftime. Some people said they've seen more defense on video games. You joke about that, but it's not a laughing matter.'' -- Washington Wizards' Mike James after the Wizards 128-122 loss to the Knicks.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Anderson Varejao fights for the rebound and comes down awkwardly on his left leg and would sustain a leg injury.
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