121 - 123 Final - 3OT
  for this game

Jefferson leads Jazz over Mavs in triple-OT

Apr 17, 2012 - 7:33 AM Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) - Al Jefferson scored 28 points and tied a career-high with 26 rebounds, several in key moments, and the Utah Jazz came out on top of a triple-overtime thriller, 123-121, over the Mavericks on Monday.

"It feels good to beat a great team like Dallas, [which] never gave up and kept hitting shots after shots after shots," Jefferson said. "But we just kept playing and ground it out."

Gordon Hayward netted 24 points and Devin Harris contributed 23 for the Jazz, who snapped a two-game skid. Paul Millsap and DeMarre Carroll donated 16 and 15 points, respectively.

Utah moved a half-game behind Phoenix and Houston for the Western Conference's eighth and final playoff spot. The Jazz own the tiebreaker over both teams.

Dirk Nowitzki poured in 40 points, Jason Terry supplied 27 off the bench and Vince Carter had 18 points to go with 12 boards for the Mavericks, who have lost two straight.

"You've got to give them credit, they hung in there. I thought Jefferson was phenomenal all night, making big shots everywhere," said Nowitzki.

A three from Harris followed by Jefferson's jumper gave Utah a five-point lead -- the largest for either team in any of the overtime periods -- with 1:08 remaining in the third OT.

Delonte West knocked down his own trey 12 seconds later, but Carroll pulled down Jefferson's miss on the Jazz's next possession, and Millsap and Harris combined for 3-of-4 free-throws down the stretch to finally secure the victory.

Dallas trailed by 10 with 7:41 to play in the fourth, but chipped away thereafter. Down 85-80 at the 1:08, Terry knocked down a three-pointer. After Hayward hit a pair from the line, Carter knocked down a triple to pull the Mavericks within one.

On their next possession, Nowitzki drove into the lane and kicked out to Carter on the right wing, who buried a trey for the Mavericks' first lead of the fourth quarter.

But Millsap stormed into the paint and, with perfect timing, grabbed Hayward's miss high off the rim and resoundingly slammed in a dunk to tie the game and force overtime.

Trailing by three in the final seconds of the first extra session, Nowitzki pump-faked to avoid the jumping Hayward, dribbled once and drained the three- pointer from the top of the key for a 105-105 tie with 3.9 on the clock.

Hayward had an open lane off the ensuing inbounds pass but missed the layup attempt, and Jefferson's tip-in try bounced off the back of the rim.

Both teams connected on just 2-of-7 attempts from the floor in the second overtime, and Jefferson's turnaround jumper at the 29-second mark tied it at 111.

Dallas outshot Utah 40.6 percent to 35.1 percent in the first half but still trailed 43-42 at intermission.

Game Notes

The Jazz lost a four-overtime game, the longest contest in program history, to Atlanta on March 25...Dallas had won seven straight meetings entering Monday...The Mavericks completed a four-game road trip that took place over five days...Utah avoided being swept in the season series for the second consecutive year...It was the second time Dallas has gone to three overtimes 3-OT in franchise history.