The Dallas Mavericks staged the biggest comeback in franchise history on Tuesday to beat a stunned Minnesota Timberwolves 107-100 in an NBA clash.
Minnesota led 70-41 early in the third quarter. But the Mavericks woke up just in time and erased the 29-point deficit en route to victory.
“It just shows that there are two halves of basketball to play,” said Mavs point guard Jason Kidd, who had a season-high 16 assists and his ninth double-double of the season.
“We played terrible in the first half and then we played like the Mavericks in the second half. We were hoping that with Minnesota being a young team that we could get the game close and use our experience to get the win,” he said.
Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki knocked down back-to-back baskets to spark a 22-2 scoring run that cut the deficit to single digits before the third quarter ended.
The Timberwolves answered with a few baskets of their own, but Dallas soon regained the momentum and took over in the final period.
“It seemed like they [the Mavs] made their run in the second half and then just kept on coming,” Minnesota guard Randy Foye said. “They wouldn’t stop. We would make a little run and push it back to 12 or 13, but they just kept coming.”
Jason Terry played a key role in an 18-5 scoring run for Dallas. He sank a pair of 3-pointers and knocked down a 6m shot to cut the deficit to just two at 91-89.
“We dug a hole for ourselves being down 29 points,” Terry said. “Offensively, we didn’t take the ball to the basket early on but in the second half we attacked. We were the aggressors. We put them back on their heels.”
Terry led Dallas with 29 points off the bench while Nowitzki added 24 points and 13 rebounds for the Mavericks.
“We had the game in hand,” Timberwolves coach Kevin McHale said. “Then they started chipping away and chipping away. Even when they started making a comeback, we held them off a few times.”
“But the two things that hurt us were allowing them second shots and the fact that we couldn’t come up with a defensive rebound when we needed it,” he said.