Sunday night game round-up: Mavs too strong for Blazers in OT

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Blazers 120, Mavericks 132, OT

For a game that ended up going to overtime, this wasn't even close in the final as the Dallas Mavericks called upon all their veteran experience to beat the Portland Trail Blazers last night.

Dirk Nowitzki and Deron Williams played like this was game seven of a playoff series, stepping up big in the clutch to record season-high point totals each in the win. Dirk finished the night with 40 while Williams added 31. 

While the Blazers did manage to send the game to OT, their shooting was wasteful for pretty much most of the night, as Damian Lillard had 26 points, but made only 8 of 26 field-goal attempts. CJ McCollum didn't fare much better, going 9 of 22 for 22 points and eight assists.

The win put Dallas half a game behind Portland for the sixth seed in the Western Conference. The Mavericks also gained a tiebreaker on their rivals, if it should ever be that close in the final standings.

Magic 100, Raptors 105

With around three weeks left of the NBA regular season, the Toronto Raptors are sitting where their fans could only have dreamed of, finding themselves just a solitary game back from the Cleveland Cavaliers in the race for the Eastern Conference top seed. That's what this win over Orlando did for them.

DeMar DeRozan had 25 points for the Raptors, ably backed up by Luis Scola who put 20 on the box score and Kyle Lowry's 18, in a game where the Magic actually shot better than Toronto in all areas - although that may be due to the fact they only played eight guys all night.

Evan Fournier and Victor Oladipo top scored for Orlando with 21 points apiece, but it wasn't enough as the Magic slipped to a 29-40 record, well out of playoff contention. 

Celtics 120, 76ers 105

After a four-game losing streak dented their confidence and chances at landing the third spot in the East, the Boston Celtics couldn't have wished for this game against the Philadelphia 76ers to come sooner.

Thankfully for them, the whipping boys of the NBA didn't put up the biggest of fights, and Boston's losing skid was stopped. 

Isaiah Thomas led the scoring for the Celtics with 26 points on a night where six members of the rotation managed to break double figures. Jared Sullinger added 17 points and 13 rebounds while Amir Johnson helped himself too 18 points on an impressive 9 of 10 shooting.

For the Sixers, it was their last man off the bench who led them in scoring, as Carl Landry had 26 to go along with eight rebounds. Philly has now lost five in a row - and 18 of the last 19 - to fall to 9-61.

Clippers 105, Pelicans 109

On a night where an already downtrodden New Orleans Pelicans lost their best player for the rest of the season, you could have forgiven them had they been swept away by a Clippers side looking to make a deep playoff run.

That didn't happen, however, as the Pelicans stepped up big time, with Jrue Holiday leading his NOLA side past Chris Paul and the Clippers. Holiday had 22 and eight, with Omer Asik adding 15 points and 14 rebounds as the Pelicans picked up the win.

CP3 and J.J. Redick each scored 24 points, and Paul also had 13 assists for the Clippers, who lost in Memphis on Saturday night and were playing their second game in less than 24 hours.

Jazz 94, Bucks 85

A young Milwaukee Bucks side got dominated on the glass by the Utah Jazz, who throttled their opposition's offense effectively to keep themselves in the chase for the 8th seed in the West.

Gordon Hayward scored 18 points, including 13 during the game-breaking third quarter, to keep the Jazz just a game behind the Dallas Mavericks. Shelvin Mack had 13 points and 12 assists, and Rudy Gobert had 12 points and 14 rebounds in a game where Utah executed well and out-rebounded the Bucks 44-27.

Jabari Parker finished with 19 points and eight rebounds for the Bucks while Khris Middleton had 13 points as Milwaukee fell to a 30-40 record. 

Kings 88, Knicks 80

On a night where the New York Knicks had to do without their leading scorer Carmelo Anthony, they would always find it hard to put points up. That proved to be the case at MSG on Sunday as the Kings and their NBA-worst defense held the Knicks to just 80 points.

DeMarcus Cousins and Robin Lopez battled all night in a heavyweight clash that saw the Sacramento man come out on top as he finished a point ahead of Lopez, going for 24 points and 20 rebounds against 23 and 20 from Lopez.

Neither team shot above 40% from the field in a game that won't live long in the memory.

Utah Jazz
Northwest Division
Western Conference
Eastern Conference
New Orleans Pelicans
Southwest Division
Toronto Raptors
Atlantic Division
Dirk Nowitzki
Dallas Mavericks
L.A. Clippers
Pacific Division
Milwaukee Bucks
Central Division
Portland Trail Blazers
Philadelphia 76ers
Orlando Magic
Southeast Division
Boston Celtics
New York Knicks
Sacramento Kings

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