Mavericks 100, Magic 98: Dirk Nowitzki Jumper Sinks Orlando, Caps Another Magic Collapse

Mandatory Credit: Douglas Jones-US PRESSWIRE

Dirk Nowitzki banked in a jumper over Hedo Turkoglu with 5.9 seconds remaining on Friday, capping an impressive Dallas Mavericks rally to give the defending NBA champions a 100-98 victory against the Orlando Magic. Turkoglu's open three-pointer on Orlando's ensuing possession fell well off the mark, and Ryan Anderson's tip-in attempt just before the horn rimmed out. Orlando held a 15-point lead in the third quarter, but failed to put Dallas away despite numerous chances, and the Mavericks punished it as a result. Jason Terry sparked the Mavs' comeback effort by scoring 10 of his 17 points in the final frame, while fellow backcourt reserve Delonte West scored seven of his 15.

As usual in Orlando losses, turnovers proved to be the story: the Magic committed 12 in the second half, leading to 14 Mavs points. And curiously, Orlando failed to involve superstar center Dwight Howard in the fourth period. Howard, a six-time All-Star, got just two field-goal attempts and one free throw in the final 12 minutes, scoring two points. Meanwhile, Turkoglu and Jameer Nelson combined for 10 shot attempts and four turnovers.

Team Pace Efficiency eFG% FT Rate OReb% TO Rate
Mavericks 93.1 107.4 51.9% 21.3 11.9 9.7
Magic 93.1 105.2 51.9% 21.8 23.8 17.2
Green denotes a stat better than the team's season average;
red denotes a stat worse than the team's season average.

These losses long ago stopped becoming instructive for Orlando; the team learned nothing new tonight, I don't think. The Magic can't turn the ball over the way they have and expect to prevail against the league's better teams, nor can they ignore Howard and expect to find success either. "We keep doing it and doing it and doing it and doing it," Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said of his team's turnovers, "and it's an area we're just not getting better in. We're just not."

No, they're not. Orlando's lost four of its last seven games, averaging 18.4 turnovers in the losses during that span.

Nelson played brilliantly overall, scoring a team-best 24 points on 10-of-17 shooting, but the Magic fell apart without him on the floor. Though reserve Chris Duhon shot 2-of-4 for six points in his 16 minutes, Dallas outscored Orlando by 15 points when he took the floor for Nelson.

Unless the Magic fan find ways to take better care of the ball, it will continue to struggle putting their opponents away, and continue to be vulnerable to disheartening losses such as Friday's.

We invite you to follow Orlando Pinstriped Post on Twitter and like Orlando Pinstriped Post on Facebook.

SB Nation Featured Video
Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Orlando Pinstriped Post

You must be a member of Orlando Pinstriped Post to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Orlando Pinstriped Post. You should read them.

Join Orlando Pinstriped Post

You must be a member of Orlando Pinstriped Post to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Orlando Pinstriped Post. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.