The Los Angeles Clippers (51-22) defeated the Dallas Mavericks (43-30) 109-103 on Thursday night to move within two games of the Oklahoma City Thunder for the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference.
Dallas has now lost two of its last three games and sits a half-game behind the Phoenix Suns for the West's eighth and final playoff spot.
Chris Paul bounced back from an 0-for-12 shooting performance in a loss to the New Orleans Pelicans by scoring a game-high 31 points and dishing out a game-high nine assists.
Blake Griffin added 18 points, 13 rebounds, four assists and the game's go-ahead bucket with 33.9 seconds remaining while DeAndre Jordan recorded his 36th double-double (16 points and 15 rebounds) of the season in the win.
Matt Barnes chipped in 12 points and Jamal Crawford added 14 on 3-of-12 shooting off the bench.
After a high-scoring first half that saw the Mavericks outscore the Clippers by two, things got chippy in the third quarter when Barnes and Shawn Marion got tangled up and exchanged pleasantries. The Clippers took advantage of the momentum swing and outscored the Mavericks by eight over the game's final 24 minutes.
All told, three technical fouls were assessed per side by the time the final buzzer sounded.
Vince Carter led Dallas with 23 points on a sterling 9-of-13 shooting (4-of-5 from three) off the pine while Dirk Nowitzki added 21 points on 7-of-15 shooting and nine rebounds.
Jae Crowder was steady off the bench as well, scoring 13 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting in 19 minutes.
Next up for the Mavericks is a matchup with the Sacramento Kings on Saturday while the Clippers are set for a showdown with the Houston Rockets after a day off on Friday.