5 Most Memorable Games from the Dallas Mavericks' 2012-13 Season
Although it was a disappointing season for the Dallas Mavericks, there is no doubt that the 2012-13 team did provide plenty of memorable moments.
At 41-41 Dallas failed to make the postseason for the first time since 2000 and at the end of the day, their inability to play top-level defense and come together as a unit prevented them from sneaking into the West's top eight.
What was frustrating about the Mavericks this season was that they struggled to have any consistency. During some games they looked like they could beat anybody in the league, but other times they looked like one of the worst NBA teams.
However, when the Mavericks were at their best, they played in some great games this season and had some outstanding individual performances.
5. February 24 vs. Los Angeles Lakers
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In late February, both the Dallas Mavericks and the Los Angeles Lakers were still under .500 and trying to push their way back into the playoff picture.
This game had potential tie-breaker implications, so both teams came out and gave it their best shot.
The matchup between the two underachieving Western Conference foes, however, ended up boiling down to a battle between two of the greatest players of all time.
Kobe Bryant put up 38 points for the Lakers to go along with 12 rebounds and seven assists compared to Dirk Nowitzki's 30 to help guide the Lakers to a 103-99 victory at the American Airlines Center.
Along with the potential playoff implications, Bryant had some extra motivation, as the game was played just days after Mavericks owner Mark Cuban suggested in a radio interview that the Lakers should consider dumping Bryant through the amnesty clause.
"Amnesty THAT," Bryant tweeted after the game, showing the Mavericks once again that when you mess with the Black Mamba, you're going to get bit.
4. March 26 vs. Los Angeles Clippers
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Just as the Mavericks were making a serious playoff push in late March, they ran into one of the Western Conference's best teams, the LA Clippers on March 24.
The game meant bad news for Dallas, as up to that point they had been unable to win any games against the top four teams in the Western Conference.
However, due to a season-high 33 points from Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas was able to reverse their fortune with a 109-102 overtime victory to bring them to within one game under .500 on the season.
The game went down to the wire as both teams traded the lead late. With under a minute left, Chris Paul had put the Clippers up before O.J. Mayo answered with a layup to tie the game with just 0.6 seconds to go.
Following that there was a controversial call that went in the Mavs' favor and allowed the game to go into OT. Los Angeles' Blake Griffin caught a full court pass and flipped the ball into the basket as time expired, seemingly giving the Clippers a dramatic walk-off victory.
However, Griffin was called for pushing off and the basket was waved off. Whether or not it was the correct call, Dallas was able to take advantage in OT as Dirk scored Dallas first eight of the period, allowing them to hang on for an important win.
3. December 8 at Houston Rockets
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Before Dirk Nowitzki returned in late December, it was O.J. Mayo who was leading the Mavericks in scoring, and the rag tag Mavs were scoring in bunches against the rest of the league.
On December 8, Dallas went to Houston to play the cross-state rival Rockets, another one of the league's best scoring units.
James Harden scored a big 39 points for the Rockets, but he wasn't even the leading scorer in the contest, as Mayo dropped a career-high 40 including 10 in the last three minutes of the contest to propel the Mavs to a 116-109 victory.
At the time, it seemed like it could be a breakout game for Mayo as he was taking the next step in his evolution to becoming one of the game's best scorers.
Unfortunately as we know now, it didn't quite turn out that way for the former USC star, but it will still be one of the most individually impressive games a Mav had all season long.
2. January 18 vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
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On January 18, the Mavericks were still trying to recover from losing nine out of 10 in late December and early January, but seemed to be gaining some momentum, having won four in a row.
They were then faced with one of the West's top teams, Oklahoma City, on their home floor, and it seemed as though they were prime for an upset.
Dallas certainly played like they were ready for one, as the Mavericks got a 29-point performance from Vince Carter and a huge game-tying three from O.J. Mayo to send the game into overtime.
However, Kevin Durant just wouldn't let his team lose. Durant scored 52 points including going 21-21 from the free-throw line to lead the Thunder to a dramatic 112-109 OT victory.
The game thwarted the Mavericks' momentum, but it was a moral victory to have played the Thunder so close even when the Mavs were still well under .500.
1. March 30 vs. Chicago Bulls
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In late March the Mavs were making their final playoff push trying to pass the Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz for the final spot in the NBA playoffs.
On March 30, they were playing the final game of a six-game homestand in which they were 3-2, but in desperate need of another win to edge closer to the eighth spot.
Standing in their way were the Chicago Bulls, who were fighting for home court in the East.
Down 12 in the fourth quarter, the Mavericks seemed like they were in for a crushing loss that would have pushed them back to 36-39 and firmly behind the eighth ball for the postseason.
However, Dallas would not go down without a fight.
The Mavericks stormed back in the final minutes to cut the Chicago lead to three, and after some missed free throws, Nowitzki hit another three to lift the Mavericks to a much needed win.
The game saw a playoff atmosphere, as the always-rowdy Dallas crowd did everything they could to ensure their team would keep their playoff streak going.
Although in the end Dallas was unable to make that final push into the playoffs, beating Chicago with a great comeback was one of the high points of their season.