(The Sports Xchange) - Veteran forward Dirk Nowitzki scored seven of his 21 points in the final three-and-a-half minutes as the Dallas Mavericks held off the winless Philadelphia 76ers 92-86 on Monday.
Forward Chandler Parsons added a season-high 20 (all in the first half) for Dallas, who used a game-ending 11-4 rush to win its fourth straight game. Guard Deron Williams contributed 12 points and six assists.
The Mavericks (7-4) beat Philadelphia for the sixth consecutive time but it was far from easy, with Dallas shooting just 39.5 percent from the floor, compared to 44.7 percent for Philadelphia, as they were out-rebounded 46-39.
While the Mavs forced 27 turnovers, they committed 19 themselves.
“This is a hard team to get good shots against,” Dallas coach Rick Carlisle told reporters of the Sixers.
“They have young, motivated guys on small contracts. They’re playing their (butts) off. It’s good to see from a competitive standpoint but it makes it hard to get shots.”
That includes Nowitzki, a perennial All-Star, who missed 10 of his 16 attempts from the floor.
“They kept staying in the game, clawing and scratching,” he said. “And they’re obviously desperate to get their first win. We had to dig deep and grind it out.”
Rookie center Jahlil Okafor had 19 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Sixers (0-11), who have dropped 21 straight contests dating back to March 25, when it beat the Denver Nuggets.
Rookie guard T.J. McConnell had a season-high 13 points, as well as seven rebounds and six assists for Philadelphia. Forward Jerami Grant also scored a season-high 13 points, and forward Nerlens Noel chipped in 12 points and 12 rebounds.
The Sixers’ turnover total was, however, a season high, and it resulted in 28 Dallas points.
“You’re not going to win any basketball games with 27 turnovers,” Sixers coach Brett Brown said.
Philadelphia, which trailed by 19 in the first half, rallied to lead on three occasions in the fourth quarter, the last time at 82-81 on Noel’s free throw with 4:23 left.
Nowitzki, fouled by McConnell while attempting a jumper from the left baseline with 3:23 to play, sank two free throws to put Dallas ahead to stay.
Williams added a jumper with 2:41 left and Nowitzki drilled two free throws 21 seconds later.
After a dunk by Okafor, Nowitzki took a pass from center Zaza Pachulia and nailed a three-pointer from the left wing with 1:47 remaining to give the Mavs a 90-84 cushion.
Editing by John O'Brien