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Sunday, January 29, 2012
After 1: Mavs 24, Spurs 18

By Jeff Caplan

DALLAS -- Dirk Nowitzki received a rousing ovation upon being announced in the starting lineup for his first game back since Jan. 19.

After that, he was Dirk the decoy. With Jason Kidd sidelined by a right calf and Rodrigue Beaubois running the point, the other four Mavs got shots off. Nowitzki did pull down three rebounds and intercepted a pass in the lane to at least get his hands on the basketball. He sat down after a six-minute run with no points. He returned with 41.9 seconds to go and got his first shot attempt off with just seconds to go from the top of the arc. It was off the mark.

Vince Carter got the start at shooting guard and continued his hot starts. He had eight in the first quarter Friday night and put up 10 tonight on 4-of-6 shooting in his second game back from that left foot sprain.

The Spurs got off to an 8-2 start, but Dallas countered with a 12-2 run that became 18-6.

Jason Terry started with the hot hand, hitting both of his jumpers for four points. Rodrigue Beaubois also had four points.

Richard Jefferson leads San Antonio with seven points.

And the big stat of the quarter was the Spurs making just 1-of-6 from beyond the arc. Remember, on Jan. 5, they nailed 11 in the first half.