Head coach Randy Wittman has done his fair share of yelling early in the season (US Presswire)
DALLAS (AP) - Chris Kaman scored 23 points and had eight rebounds in
only his second start for Dallas, and the Mavericks held on for a
107-101 victory over the winless Washington Wizards on Wednesday night.
O.J. Mayo had 25 points as the Mavericks snapped a three-game losing streak since Kaman's only other start.
Washington (0-7) had trailed by as many as 22 points before a 15-0
run in the fourth quarter. Cartier Martin capped that spurt with
consecutive 3-pointers, swishing the second from the wing right in front
of the Mavs bench and coach Rick Carlisle to get within 88-85. Kaman
had a short hook on the Mavs' next possession.
After Kevin Seraphin made a hook over Kaman, the Mavs' 7-foot center
scored with his back to the basket when he tossed the ball over his
A defensive rebound by Kaman led to a basket by Mayo that made it 94-87, and still that almost wasn't enough.
Washington is the only NBA team still without a victory, and is one
short of the franchise-worst start set just last season when the Wizards
lost their first eight games.
Detroit won for the first time in its nine games earlier Wednesday, 94-76 at Philadelphia.
Seraphin had consecutive baskets and it was 101-98 with just under 2
minutes left. Seraphin then had a steal, but Jannero Pargo missed a
potential tying 3.
Martin made another 3 in the closing seconds, but Kaman had another strong inside move and made the free throw.
The Wizards made six 3s in the fourth quarter, but never went to the
free-throw line while Kaman's closing three-point play made Dallas 9 of
10 from the stripe in the final 12 minutes.
Washington outscored Dallas 34-22 in the fourth quarter without a
starter getting on the floor. Seraphin had 14 of his 16 points in that
spurt and Martin had 14 points after not even playing the first three
quarters, and made all four of his 3-pointers.
Jordan Crawford led Washington with 21 points.
It was the first game in Dallas started together by the 7-foot Kaman
and Elton Brand, Mavs newcomers who were past teammates with the Los
Angeles Clippers. After three subpar games in a row, Carlisle wanted to
shake up his lineup still missing injured starters Dirk Nowitzki and
Brand had 11 points and 12 rebounds. Jae Crowder, the rookie who had
started the previous four games, scored 12 points off the bench.
The Wizards were within 37-33 when Emeka Okafor made a 7-foot
turnaround jumper with just under 7 minutes left in the first half.
Brand then made both free throws after being fouled by Okafor to
start a 15-2 run. And the Mavericks made 10 of their next 12 shots for a
63-45 halftime lead.
It was the first 40-point quarter this season for the Mavericks.