Dirk Nowitzki needed four stitches above right eye

HOUSTON -- Dirk Nowitzki’s potential career as a model took another hit during Saturday night’s overtime period, when he got caught with an errant elbow above the right eye.

“Just four stitches,” Nowitzki said after getting postgame medical treatment. “I’ll be all right.”

Nowitzki was bleeding profusely after the cut was opened up with 47.9 seconds remaining in overtime. He thought he got hit with an elbow by Houston point guard Goran Dragic, who was called for an offensive foul. However, it appeared that it was actually teammate Brandan Wright’s elbow that did the damage during a scramble for a loose ball.

Not that it mattered much after the Mavs pulled out the 101-99 win.

“It was an offensive foul,” Nowitzki said, “and we moved on from there.”

Mavs athletic trainer Casey Smith made like a cut man in a boxer’s corner during the timeout after Dragic got whistled for the foul. He managed to stop the bleeding, allowing Nowitzki to get back on the court for the next possession, when Jason Terry hit a pull-up jumper off a pick-and-roll with Nowitzki to give the Mavs the lead for good.

“Hats off to the training staff for getting the blood stopped,” coach Rick Carlisle said. “[Nowitzki] being able to go back into the game created that scoring opportunity for Jet, because [Marcus] Camby was hugging Dirk so closely that it created a double screen and Jet got a really good look to put us in strong position.”