After their win streak ended in the opener of this home-and-home set against Denver, the Dallas Mavericks have to be feeling confident about bouncing back on their own floor.
Led by Monta Ellis and Dirk Nowitzki, the Mavericks will try to extend their best home start in 10 years Monday night when they host the Nuggets.
Dallas (9-5) stormed back from an early 17-point deficit to take a late lead Saturday before Randy Foye sank his fifth 3-pointer in the waning moments to lift Denver to a 102-100 victory.
Foye finished with a season-high 17 points as the Nuggets (6-6) won their fifth in seven games while ending the Mavs' win streak at four. Ty Lawson had a team-high 20 points and nine assists, and Kenneth Faried added 18 points and 14 rebounds.
"We're getting them, that's all that matters, as long we're getting the wins," Faried said. "I'm excited. The team is excited and the coach is excited."
Faried has averaged 13.0 points on 21-of-36 shooting and 15.5 boards during a streak of four straight double-doubles against the Mavericks. Though he's also recorded four consecutive double-doubles at home, Faried only has only one in five road games.
Lawson ranks among the league's leaders with 24.6 points and 9.4 assists per game on the road. The point guard, however, has totaled 27 points and 11 assists over his last three trips to Dallas.
With another strong defensive effort, the Nuggets could move above .500 for the first time this season. They limited the Mavs to 40.2 percent shooting Saturday, including 7 of 21 from 3-point range.
That could prove a difficult task in Dallas, where the Mavericks have averaged 111.4 points and shot 50.0 percent from the field.
Dallas, which trailed by as many as 17 on Saturday, seeks its first 8-0 start at home since opening the 2003-04 season with 10 consecutive victories there.
Ellis has helped lead the way with a 26.6 home scoring average that ranks behind only Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Durant among the NBA's leaders. Ellis is also averaging a team-high 23.6 points overall after finishing with 25 on 8-of-14 shooting Saturday.
That production may continue against Denver, which Ellis torched for 31.2 points per game in his last five at home dating to his time with Golden State and Milwaukee.
Nowitzki had a game-high 27 points Saturday but missed a late shot that would have sent the game to overtime. The 11-time All-Star has averaged 24.3 points while hitting 11 of 25 from beyond the arc in his last six games.
"I've got to be a little better down the stretch," Nowitzki said. "I missed my last two or three shots."
Dallas will get its coach back after Rick Carlisle drew two technical fouls and was ejected by referee Tony Brothers in the second quarter.
Carlisle's club has a good chance to contribute to Denver's woes on the road. The Nuggets have given up 114 points or more three times while going 1-4 away from home.
The Mavericks will try to avoid their fourth loss in five games in this series.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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