Tuesday, April 20, 2010
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Howard powers Magic to 97-82 win over Mavericks

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[April 20, 2010]  DALLAS (AP) -- Dwight Howard dominated inside with 17 points, 20 rebounds and five blocked shots, and his Orlando teammates converted 14 of 24 attempts from 3-point range as the Magic atoned for an earlier loss to Dallas with a 97-82 victory over the Mavericks on Thursday night.

Reserve Mickael Pietrus had 24 points, making all six of his 3-point attempts, and Vince Carter added 19 points to help the Magic win for the 14th time in 16 games.

InsuranceDirk Nowitzki scored 24 points for the Mavericks, whose three-game winning streak ended. Jason Terry and J.J. Barea had 16 points apiece for Dallas.

The Mavericks were 95-85 winners at Orlando on Feb. 19 in the only other meeting between the league powers this season. The Magic connected on only 4 of 25 from beyond the arc in that loss.

Orlando's long-range shooters were far more accurate in Thursday's rematch, getting off to a fast start by hitting 4 of their first 7 from 3-point territory.

Nowitzki scored 12 third-quarter points, but the rest of the Mavericks could manage only eight more as Orlando raced to a 72-56 lead entering the final quarter.


Dallas pulled to 91-82 on a basket by Barea with 1:14 left, but the Mavericks couldn't get any closer.

The Magic went 8 for 13 from long range in the first half to build a 43-36 lead at the break. Pietrus gave the Magic a lift in the second, scoring 13 of his team's first 14 points in the quarter.

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The Mavericks had one of their poorest offensive first halves of the season, threatening their season low of 33 before hitting a pair of baskets over the final 1:12 of the half.

The Mavericks were coming off a 106-102 overtime victory in Memphis on Wednesday night, while the Magic had been off since Sunday's 103-97 home win over Denver.

NOTES: Pietrus was back in the rotation after sitting out three of the previous five games because of a sprained left ankle. ... Dallas shot 35 percent in the first half and went 1 for 9 from 3-point range. ... Only six of Orlando's 14 first-half field goals were two-point baskets. ... Barea missed the previous two games because of a sore left ankle. ... The Magic had lost 11 of their previous 14 meetings with Mavericks.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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