Nowitzki, Mavericks hold off Knicks
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New York @
101 - 103
Record: 3-5
DALLAS (AP) -- The injury-ridden Dallas Mavericks got just enough from their healthy players Friday night to pull out a victory over the New York Knicks.

Dirk Nowitzki had 30 points and 12 rebounds to help the Mavericks win for the eighth time in 10 games, a 103-101 victory over the Knicks.

Josh Howard added a career-high 22 points and 13 rebounds for Dallas, which led by as many as 10 early in the fourth quarter and then had to withstand a late New York rally.

Dallas was without three of its top eight players -- Michael Finley (sprained ankle), Erick Dampier (strained hip flexor), and Jason Terry (sprained ankle). Reserve guard Dan Dickau also missed the game because of food poisoning.

"We had a lot of missing pieces," said sixth man Jerry Stackhouse, who scored 19 points. "But we just executed and played to our strengths."

Jamal Crawford had 26 points and Stephon Marbury added 24 points and eight assists to pace the Knicks. Marbury had only two points at halftime, but scored 18 in the fourth quarter to keep the Knicks close.

"He was terrific," Knicks coach Lenny Wilkens said. "He just put the team on his back and we milked a situation where he had chances to get to the basket...He kept us in this game."

Kurt Thomas added 16 points for New York, which has lost four of five games on the road.

New York tied it at 97-all with 1:45 left, but Marquis Daniels' short jumper with 1:27 to play put Dallas in front for good.

The Mavericks bumped their lead to five points at 103-98 on Nowitzki's two free throws with 41 seconds remaining.

New York had a chance to tie or win the game with the clock winding down, but Tim Thomas' 3-pointer with 5 seconds left went off the rim. After the ball went out of bounds off a Mavericks player, Crawford missed a desperation 35-footer as time expired.

Crawford banked in a 3-pointer at the buzzer on Thursday night to give the Knicks their first road win of the season, 93-92 over the Houston Rockets. This time, he wasn't as fortunate.

"I didn't think it would come again so soon," said Crawford, who made five 3-pointers in the first half. "I didn't have that good of a look, though. It was just a heave."

The Knicks pulled within two points with 22 seconds left when Daniels fouled Marbury on a 3-point attempt. Marbury converted all three free throws.

Stackhouse then missed two free throws with 20 seconds left to give New York a chance.

But Tim Thomas was unable to capitalize on his open 3-pointer from the left wing.

"It's exactly what you want," Tim Thomas said. "That shot has to go in."

Stackhouse came up with a key defensive play early in the fourth quarter, deflecting a pass, then saving the ball on the sideline to a wide-open Howard for a dunk, extending the Mavericks' lead to 77-69.

Dallas led 81-71 when New York came back with a 12-4 spurt, capped by Crawford's 3-pointer with 5:56 remaining.

Wilkens and Dallas coach Don Nelson are 1-2 in all-time coaching victories. Wilkens has 1,318 wins and Nelson has 1,156. ... The Mavericks unveiled their secondary road uniforms, green and blue with retro-style script. The league gave the team permission to unveil the uniforms at home. ... The Knicks wrapped up a 1-3 road trip, but a close call against a good team gave them confidence. "We're much better now than when we left," Wilkens said. "We've come together on the road and guys are very supportive of one another."

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