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Nowitzki propels Mavericks past Trail Blazers

Mar 12, 2009 - 5:29 AM PORTLAND, Oregon (Ticker) -- All-Star Dirk Nowitzki recorded 29 points and 10 rebounds as the Dallas Mavericks snapped the 12-game home winning streak of the Portland Trail Blazers with a 93-89 triumph on Wednesday.

Jason Terry added 24 points off the bench and Jason Kidd had 10 rebounds and 10 assists for Dallas (40-25), which has won seven of its last nine contests and moved within one half-game of Denver (41-25) for the seventh seed in the Western Conference.

"We've got a lot of respect for Portland and what they can do in this building, but we're trying to move up (in the standings)," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "We're approaching every game like it has great importance. We're going to do everything we can to put ourselves in a position to win."

LaMarcus Aldridge posted 23 points and 11 rebounds and All-Star Brandon Roy added 22 points for Portland, which dropped its first game at the Rose Garden since a 104-98 setback to the Cleveland Cavaliers on January 21.

"At the end we picked it up, but they still had a pretty good rhythm and they made plays," Aldridge said. "I didn't think about the streak. I was just trying to take care of home court and stay in the standings."

"We've had a lot of close ones. We ended up losing one," Roy said. "We didn't have good effort in the first half. They attacked us first. They were the more aggressive team and they deserved to win."

Travis Outlaw scored all 20 of his team's points off the bench for the Trail Blazers (40-24), who fell for just the second time in their last seven contests and remained one half-game behind Utah (41-24) for first place in the Northwest Division.

Dallas, which swept the three-game season series between the teams, recorded a 30-19 edge in the second quarter to post a 54-44 edge at halftime.

Portland trimmed a 13-point second-half deficit to two on a number of occasions, but could not pull past the Mavericks - due in large part to Nowitzki.

The 7-foot German, who went 13-of-24 from the field, sank a jumper in the game's waning moments to keep the Trail Blazers at bay.

"We always responded the right way tonight for some reason," Nowitzki said. "When they cut it to two, four, someone hit a big shot, and made a play on the defensive end."

"He's a great player," Carlisle said of Nowitzki. "He wants the ball in his hands when the game is being decided and we do everything we can to make sure that he gets it. He delivered last night in huge way and tonight he delivered again."

Aldridge, who had the tough task of guarding Nowitzki, had nothing but praise for his adversary.

"He made some really tough shots. You've got to give him credit," Aldridge said.

"LaMarcus was pretty tight on me but it was a matter of looking at the rim and getting it up over him," Nowitzki said. "He's pretty long, he's very athletic and I was able to get him up a little bit and shoot over him."