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Mavericks pound Suns, 'over' just comes in

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DALLAS (AP) - Shawn Marion scored 18 points in his 1,000th game, Dirk Nowitzki also had 18 while passing Allen Iverson on the career scoring list and the Dallas Mavericks beat the Phoenix Suns 110-95 Sunday night.

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It was the 10th straight home win for the Mavericks against the Suns, who haven't won in Dallas since March 14, 2007.

Nowitzki passed Iverson for 18th on the NBA's scoring list with a third-quarter jumper that stopped a Phoenix run, and his 3-pointer early in the fourth started a surge that put Dallas in control for good.

Phoenix rallied from a first-half deficit and made it interesting for a second straight night in Texas after losing at Western Conference-leading San Antonio. Goran Dragic led four players in double figures with 18 points.

Nowitzki's third-quarter jumper was the first basket in a 6-0 spurt that pushed Dallas' lead back to double digits after Phoenix had trailed by as many as 20 in the first half. Nowitzki finished with 24,375 career points, seven ahead of Iverson. Patrick Ewing is 17th at 24,815.

The big German stopped another Phoenix run in the fourth with a 3-pointer after the Suns had pulled within five, sparking a 10-0 run that put Dallas ahead 91-76. Brandan Wright, who entered just seconds earlier after sitting four straight games, converted a three-point play and Vince Carter hit two free throws before getting a steal that turned into a layup by Dahntay Jones.

Wright was the fourth center used by coach Rick Carlisle, who decided to give rookie Bernard James his first career start. Wright's three-point play put Dallas' lead back in double digits for good with 10:30 remaining.

The lead was 17 with about 5 minutes left when Marion stripped a driving Dragic, and Darren Collison flipped the ball to Jones for an easy dunk and a 102-83 lead.

Marion, who played 660 games for the Suns from 1999 to 2008, added nine rebounds and five assists. Elton Brand played his 900th career game and finished with 12 points for Dallas.

The Mavericks, who had their eighth straight game with at least five double-figure scorers, had four different players score during an 11-0 run bridging the first and second quarters. Nowitzki hit a jumper, Carter and Rodrigue Beaubois had consecutive 3-pointers and Jones converted a three-point play for a 38-21 lead.

Dallas pushed the lead out to 46-26 on a layup from Chris Kaman and back-to-back buckets by Marion, who had six straight points in the second and finished the half with a game-high 12.

Collison, who had 16 straight double-figure games coming in, was scoreless on just one shot attempt in the first half but led Dallas with four assists. Beaubois and Mayo had three assists apiece for the Mavericks, who had 16 assists on 24 baskets with just three turnovers before halftime.

The Suns settled for a lot of long jumpers and shot 38 percent in the first half, going 1 for 9 from 3-point range.

NOTES: Most of the game was played with a two-man officiating crew after Leroy Richardson strained his right calf early in the first quarter and didn't return. ... Eight of the Suns' first nine games under interim coach Lindsey Hunter will be part of a back-to-back set. ... In three games before facing the Mavericks, Dragic was averaging nearly 10 assists per game with only five total turnovers. ... James' start made it the 17th different starting lineup for Dallas this season. ... The Mavericks had to decide after the game whether to keep veteran G Mike James at the end of his second 10-day contract. If he stays, his contract is guaranteed for the rest of the season. ... The Suns were trying for a third straight win in the second of back-to-back games after losing the first eight of the season.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

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The Associated Press
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