DALLAS, Nov. 22 (Ticker) --
The Dallas Mavericks missed Dirk Nowitzki
when it mattered most.
's drive at the buzzer went awry as the
Minnesota Timberwolves parlayed a near triple-double by Kevin Garnett
into an 83-82 triumph over the Mavericks.
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Prior to the game, Dallas learned it would be without its
All-Star forward Nowitzki for at least a week and up to 10 days.
For the first 43 minutes, it appeared that the Mavericks would
be able to survive the loss of their leading scorer and
Dallas held a 79-67 edge with 4:27 left when Minnesota closed
with a fury. Garnett, who had 21 points, 17 rebounds and nine
assists, scored the final two points in the 16-3 burst -- two
free throws with 5.9 seconds to go.
"Making the free throws was all confidence," said Garnett, who
was 7-of-10 from the line. "I had missed a couple. I'm just
giving what I've got."
Without Nowitzki, the Mavericks, who lost for the second time in
as many nights, opted to go to the veteran Stackhouse.
Just 1-of-8 in the contest, Stackhouse tried to penetrate from
the perimeter but Trenton Hassell
got a hand on the ball and
Stackhouse could manage only a feeble attempt at getting the
ball to the rim.
"Trent Hassell made a big, big defensive stop at the end,"
"We didn't have our marquee guy (Nowitzki) and I thought Stack
did a great job of getting open, but it didn't fall for us,"
Mavericks point guard Devin Harris
said. "They've got Garnett, who made the plays down the stretch."
Dallas faces a trying week without its leader.
"At my position we had Kenyon Martin
last night, KG (Garnett)
tonight, Tim Duncan
Wednesday and Zach Randolph
Friday," said Nowitzki. "That's as good as it gets at the power
added 16 points for Minnesota, which has won seven
of the last 11 matchups between the teams.
had 22 points and eight rebounds and Marquis Daniels
added 11 and 10 for Dallas, which lost for just the second time
in six homes games this season.
"Josh played his game," Nowitzki said. "He's not scared of
anything. He's a tough kid, one of our best defenders. He made
big shots tonight and almost won the game for us."
Howard scored seven points during a 19-6 run that put the
Mavericks up 27-12 with 2:51 left in the first quarter. The
Timberwolves sliced the deficit to 43-40 by halftime.
Dallas stretched its lead to 55-41 in the third quarter, but
again Minnesota answered with a 21-5 burst to take its first
lead of the game with 29 seconds left in the period.