The New Jersey Nets will have to wait a little while longer to eclipse their win total from last season after falling Saturday night to the Dallas Mavericks 87-86 at the Prudential Center. Hanging tough with Dallas all game long, it took a Dirk Nowitzki jumper in the final seconds to put an end to the Nets modest two-game winning streak.
New Jersey is now 5-2 when owner Mikhail Prokhorov is attendance.
Brook Lopez continued to pace the Nets offensive attack with 24 points in just 28 minutes and Devin Harris was the only other player in double figures for the Nets with 15. Harris, however, missed a crucial free throw in the final minute that would have given New Jersey a three point lead and turned out to be the difference in the game.
Nowitzki shot just 7-for-24 from the field, but still led the team with 23 points including the game-winning jumper over Stephen Graham. Tyson Chandler scored 19 points while Jason Terry added 11 off the bench.
After trading leads throughout the game, the Mavs looked like they were getting ready to put the game away after Chandler's tip at 4:43 put Dallas up seven points. However, the Nets answered with an 11-2 run to turn a deficit into a two point lead. After Chandler split a pair of free throws and Harris missed a was off on a 15-footer that he felt he was fouled on, the stage was set for Nowitzki's heroics.
New Jersey's scripted play for Brook Lopez with 6 seconds remaining never materialized thanks to Dallas' defense forcing a tough in bounds pass and Jordan Farmar's desperation three at the buzzer was well short.
The Nets will get a day off before the Cleveland Cavaliers come to Newark on Monday night.