Down 0-3 in the best of seven series against the Denver Nuggets, the Dallas Mavericks faced a must-win game on Monday night. Playing in front of his home fans, Dirk Nowitzki had a game to remember as he led the Mavs to a 119-117 victory and Game 5 to be played in Denver.
Nowitzki scored 44 points on the night, including 19 points in the final stanza. For the game, the native of Germany hit 14-of-25 shots from the field, 16-of-17 shots from the line, pulled down 13 rebounds, handed out three assists, collected two steals and blocked one shot. Helping out Nowitzki was Josh Howard, who had 21 points and 11 rebounds while playing on a pair of gimpy ankles.
For the Nuggets, Carmelo Anthony was also very impressive. He finished with 41 points, 11 rebounds, five steals and three assists. Chauncey Billups had 24 points and seven assists, while J.R. Smith had 19 points off of the bench.
Game 5 is to be played on Wednesday. If the Mavs win that game, Game 6 will be back in Dallas on Friday.