Mavs Survive Kings; Who Gets 'The Dirkie'?

Trix missed a key late-game free throw and was letting his anger get the best of him. Calderon, seeing this, barked encouragingly into his teammate's ear, 'Forget about it! Let's go!' Sometimes it's the little things that win games. Mavs 93, Kings 91 was full of those times - and full of 'Dirkie' candidates.



The Dallas Mavericks registered a fifth straight road win and further tightened their grip on seventh in the West with Sunday's 93-91 win at Sacramento.

Two of the more dangerous players on the floor wore the wrong uniforms, and DeMarcus Cousins (28 points and 10 rebounds) and Rudy Gay (32 points) were nearly too much to handle -- as has been the case all season when these clubs meet.
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But Dallas countered with four Mavs scoring in double figures, led by Monta Ellis' 23 points, and survived on an off-night for Dirk Nowitzki, who scored 15 points on 5-of-17 shooting but is now 18 points shy of passing Oscar Robertson for No. 10 on the NBA's all-time scoring list.

After Marion missed a free throw that might've iced it, Nowitzki did the same with 7.7 seconds remaining. But the Kings - trailing by two with an opportunity to tie or win on their final possession -- were unable to get the ball to creator Gay and instead relied on Cousins' too-short baseline fade-away at the buzzer.

"We got tested again,'' coach Rick Carlisle said of his 47-31 Mavs. "But we bend and we don't break."

DB.com's BJ Stahl walks us through the candidates for the Player of the Game ... the "unbreakables'' who might just win "The Dirkie'':

Monta Ellis -- leads the pack with 23

Vince Carter -- 17 points, 2 rebounds, and 3 assists

Jose Calderon -- 14 points, 4 boards, 2 dimes, 2 steals ... and a heckuva pep talk
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Dirk Nowitzki -- uncharacteristically quiet 15 points

Shawn Marion -- 7 points and 9 boards

Samuel Dalembert -- 6 points, 11 rebounds, muscleman

DeJuan Blair -- Is Ready, with 6 and 9

Devin Harris -- 3 points and 7 assists

So who Deserves "The Dirkie''? Vote here!

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