DALLAS, April 1 (Ticker) -- The late-season slide continues for the Sacramento Kings.

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Steve Nash handed out a career-high 19 assists as the Dallas Mavericks matched a season best for points in a 127-117 victory over the Kings, who have dropped four of their last five games.

"It's a nice performance for us tonight and we feel good about it, but we are not where we need to be," Nash said.

Another porous defensive effort left banged-up Sacramento in a tie with the Los Angeles Lakers and just a half-game ahead of Minnesota atop the Western Conference. The 127 points allowed were a season high for the Kings, who gave up 101 in the first three quarters.

"I would like to have Bobby Jackson and Brad Miller back right now," Sacramento coach Rick Adelman said of his injured players. "That would certainly help as far as our rotation and what we can do."

Defense has been a big problem recently for Sacramento, which has allowed at least 107 points in each of its last four losses.

Michael Finley scored 29 points and Dirk Nowitzki added 25 for the Mavericks, who led by as many as 27 late in the third quarter before the Kings made a belated run in the final period against Dallas' reserves.

"We played well for a long, long period of time and then we went to sleep a little bit," Mavericks coach Don Nelson said. "We couldn't guard anybody in the fourth quarter."

Nash contributed 20 points and Nowitzki grabbed 10 rebounds for the Mavericks, who shot 54 percent (52-of-96) from the field en route to their third straight win.

"The last three games, we have been been sharing the ball well as a team and getting everyone involved," Nowitzki said.

Mike Bibby scored 23 points and Chris Webber added 22 for Sacramento, which is 0-2 on a "Texas Triangle" road trip that concludes Sunday in Houston.

Webber found optimism in the Kings' play over the last quarter and a half. They got the deficit down to nine points twice down the stretch. fourth period.

"Actually, I think tonight is a step forward," he said. "What I talked to the team about is that it is not about winning. Ultimately, that is what you want to do, but it is about the way in which you lose, too. Tonight we can walk out of here with our heads up."

The Kings stayed with the Mavericks in a high-scoring first quarter that ended in a 30-30 tie. But Dallas took control in the second period, outscoring Sacramento, 37-20.

The Mavericks, who defeated Sacramento in seven games in last year's conference semifinals, took the season series, 3-1.