Final - OT
  for this game

Nowitzki, Mavs get past Pacers in overtime

Jan 13, 2007 - 4:43 AM INDIANAPOLIS (Ticker) -- Dirk Nowitzki has coach Avery Johnson's vote for MVP.

Shaking off a hip injury, Nowitzki scored eight of his season-high 43 points in overtime as the Dallas Mavericks registered a 115-113 victory over the Indiana Pacers.

Jason Terry contributed 30 points, including the go-ahead jumper with 27 seconds remaining in overtime for Dallas, which won for the 16th time in 17 games.

Nowitzki hobbled to the sideline with 2:53 left in regulation after injuring his hip. But after a timeout, the German superstar returned to the floor and continued to be a major headache for the Pacers.

"I think I hit (Al) Harrington or bounced off Harrington as he came off my pick," Nowitzki said. "I felt a little twinge and twist of it in my hip. But it seemed to loosen up going into the overtime."

In an overtime that featured eight lead changes, Nowitzki drilled a jumper, a 3-pointer and made three free throws. He split two foul shots with two seconds left for a 115-113 lead, then the Pacers were unable to get off a final shot.

Nowitzki made 13-of-24 shots from the field and went 15-of-18 at the line.

"If there is any question about who the MVP is, take a look at the film of the game tonight," Johnson said. "Dirk was out there playing on one leg and really carries us in overtime."

"He's a great player, one of the best on the planet," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said.

Terry, who scored 12 points in the fourth quarter, made his only basket of the extra session by sinking a shot from the right elbow to give Dallas a 112-111 lead.

"I thought it was the worst defensive performance we've had all year," said Terry, who made 10-of-18 shots. "But we battled back and grinded out a win tonight. Sometimes you have to win with your offense, like we did tonight."

On the Pacers' ensuing possession, Josh Howard helped preserve the lead by coming from behind to block Danny Granger's shot with 5.6 seconds left. He also had a key block on Jermaine O'Neal in the waning seconds of regulation.

"I just tried to get the rebound, and he (Granger) had no idea anyone was behind him so I was able to get the block," said Howard, who had 15 points and eight rebounds.

O'Neal scored 26 points and Granger and Stephen Jackson had 22 apiece for the Pacers, who had a season-high three-game winning streak stopped.

O'Neal's basket inside over Nowitzki with 38 seconds remaining gave the Pacers their last lead at 111-110.

Each team had a busy night at the free-throw line. Indiana made 36-of-46 free throws while Dallas went 35-of-45 at the line.

The Pacers held a 99-93 lead with 2:53 left in regulation following a pair of free throws by Granger, who went 10-of-11 at the line.

Terry made two free throws after being fouled by Jamaal Tinsley while taking a 3-pointer and Nowitzki sank two foul shots with 2:12 to go, pulling the Mavericks within 99-97.

After O'Neal scored inside, Terry had a three-point play and sank a 3-pointer, giving Dallas a 103-101 advantage with 60 seconds left. Tinsley, who had 17 points and 13 assists, hit two free throws 29 seconds later to tie it.

"We fought hard but came up short," Tinsley said. "We competed but we are not satisfied with the loss."

Jackson scored 13 points in the first half, which ended with the Pacers holding a 51-44 lead.