Charlotte has earned its first-ever win against two NBA franchises this season, and now it would love to add a third.

The Bobcats will be trying to defeat the Dallas Mavericks for the first time on Wednesday when the teams square off in Charlotte.

Dallas (27-13) is one of just two teams, along with the Phoenix Suns, that the Bobcats (16-25) have never beaten. Charlotte earned its first-ever win against the Los Angeles Clippers on Dec. 12 and beat Memphis for the first time on Saturday.

The Bobcats are 0-6 all-time against the Mavericks, including 0-3 at home. Dallas has outscored Charlotte by an average of more than 10 points in those six contests.

The Mavericks are currently within a game of Southwest Division-leading New Orleans. However, they have dropped two of three since a season-best seven-game winning streak, and are coming off their biggest loss of the season, 102-84 in Washington on Monday.

Josh Howard had 32 points, Dirk Nowitzki added 21 points and 11 rebounds, and Devin Harris had 14 points, but no other Dallas player managed more than eight points. The Mavericks were held under 90 points for just the fifth time this season.

"Even when our defense was good, they made us pay," coach Avery Johnson said.

Nowitzki, who has 10 double-doubles this season, has scored at least 20 points in 10 straight games and 15 of 16. He has averaged 24.8 points in the six games against Charlotte.

The Bobcats lost for the second time in five games on Monday, falling 95-86 to San Antonio. Emeka Okafor had 21 points and 10 rebounds for Charlotte, which ended a season high-tying three-game home winning streak.

"This is probably one game that I don't feel bad about losing," coach Sam Vincent said. "We played pretty well. We lost to a championship team."

The Bobcats had won five of their previous eight games, including victories over Boston, Denver and Orlando. And though they lost Monday, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was impressed with their improvement.

"Sam really has it going in the right direction," Popovich told the Bobcats' official Web site. "I can understand why they are winning."

Gerald Wallace, who leads the Bobcats with 21.4 points per game, had 15 Monday before leaving late in the game after aggravating a sore left calf and knee. Wallace, who had averaged 28.2 points in his previous six games, is questionable for Wednesday.

"We still feel like we're playing good," said Jason Richardson, who had 13 points. "Even though we didn't shoot the ball quite as well toward the end or didn't make any defensive stops, it was still a good game.

"Against the defending champs, to come in here and play the way we did, it was a good game for us."

Okafor has averaged 15.2 points and 10.0 rebounds in five career games against Dallas, while Wallace has averaged 14.3 points in four.


Copyright 2007 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited