Despite missing 13 of his first 14 shots and 16 of 23 overall, the seven-foot forward hit a turnaround 17-foot jumper over Reggie Evans at the buzzer to give the Dallas Mavericks a 95-93 victory against Philadelphia, snapping the 76ers’ season-high seven-game winning streak. Nowitzki received the inbounds pass with 4.3 seconds left and spun around the 6-foot-8 Evans to deliver the game-winning shot.
Nowitzki finished with 24 points, Jason Kidd had 22 points and 12 rebounds and Jason Terry added 20 for the Mavericks (24-17).
Lou Williams scored 25 points, while Andre Iguodala had 18 points and 12 rebounds for the 76ers (20-21), who are trying to climb above .500 for the first time since Nov. 23 when they were 7-6.
Andre Miller added 12 points for Philadelphia, whose four-game home winning streak ended.
Germany which figured to be one of the tougher challenges for Team USA, proved the complete opposite, falling 106-57 on Monday Morning (ET time or whatever). The Germans who have two NBA-ers in Dirk Nowitzki and Chris Kaman were thought to be able to be a test for Team USA in their last game of pool play. Dirk was nothing of the sort, only going 4-10 from the field and ending with a dismal 14 points.
Team USA was led by C Dwight Howard’s 22 points and 9 boards and also LeBron James aka the King’s 18 points on 7-10 shooting from the field.
Up next for the Americans is the Aussie squad. Team USA (5-0) will move on to a quarterfinal matchup Wednesday against Australia, the team that’s provided them with their toughest test in China (87-76 win in an Exhibition). Australia’s team is highlighted by NBA center Andrew Bogut who was out of Australia’s last game against Team USA while resting a sore ankle for pool play.
Personally I dont see any team giving the Americans a true challenge. I think the buzz surrounding the next game against what reporters are calling a formidable opponent in Australia is all hear say. USA will wipe the floor with these Aussies and make it a perfect 6-0 en route to the gold. Just listen to Chris Kaman:
Nobody is going to beat them. No way, it’s just not going to happen.
So the Sixers (21-30) have won three in a row and have moved to one-half game out of the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff position.
Is this something to get excited about?
Answer: Not yet.
In their three-game winning streak, they have beat the likes of the Washington Wizards, the Miami Heat (worst team in the league), and the LA Clippers. This is by no means a streak to brag about, yet a streak of three games that they SHOULD win, no matter what. The real test will come tonight as they host the Dallas Mavericks (34 – 16) and All-Star Dirk Nowitzki.
However, one bright spot of late has been rookie Thaddeus Young. The 6-foot-8, 220-pound Young, a natural small forward, has started five of the last six games at power forward and played quite well. He’s averaging 12.0 points, 5.8 rebounds and shooting 26-for-48 (50.4 percent) as a starter. He will need to keep his production up as the Sixers have a pretty favorable schedule in the upcoming weeks. Following tonight’s tough matchup against Dallas, they get Memphis, on the road at Minnesota, back home against the troubled Knicks, tough one at Orlando, then what should be an easy W at Miami. The Sixers will need at least four wins out of those six games to stay in the playoff picture.