Ailing Nowitzki lifts Mavericks past Heat
And this time, Nowitzki did it while battling the flu.
Nowitzki shook off three poor quarters to score 10 of his 21 points in the final period as the Mavericks outscored the Miami Heat, 21-9, over the final 10:12 for an 86-83 victory in a memorable Game 4 on Tuesday night.
The Mavs avoided going down 3-1, a deficit no team has ever overcome in the finals, and guaranteed the series will return to Miami for a Game 6 on Sunday night. Game 5 is Thursday in Dallas.
“We just played with incredible heart and passion,” Dallas center Tyson Chandler said.
Dwyane Wade scored 32 points, but fumbled an
inbounds pass with 6.7 seconds left. He knocked the ball back to Mike Miller for a potential tying three-pointer, but it wasn’t even close to hitting the rim.
Chris Bosh scored 24 points for Miami, but the Heat got a stunningly unproductive game from their biggest star, LeBron James. He scored only eight points, making just 3 of 11 shots.
Miami was poised to take a commanding lead in the series when Udonis Haslem hit a jumper that made it 74-65 early in the fourth quarter.
But Jason Terry kick-started the comeback with six straight points. Terry had 17, Shawn Marion 16 and Chandler had 13 points and 16 rebounds.
DeShawn Stevenson, who moved to the bench so J.J. Barea could join the starting lineup, scored 11 points.