• My Scores
  • NFL
  • MLB
  • NBA
  • NHL
  • Golf

Dallas at San Antonio

Spurs hammer Mavs in Nowitzki's return to lineup

CBSSports.com wire reports

SAN ANTONIO -- Dirk Nowitzki wasn't expecting to play much during his season debut Sunday night against the San Antonio Spurs.

Still, after missing the Dallas Mavericks' first 27 regular-season games, he didn't expect to take a seat on the bench after 20 minutes with the game completely out of hand.

"In the middle of the third we were down by 80, so I didn't really have to go back in," Nowitzki said, exaggerating the Mavs' largest deficit just a bit.

More on Mavericks-Spurs
Related links
More NBA coverage

Danny Green scored a career-high 25 points and the Spurs spoiled Nowitzki's season debut with a 129-91 rout of the Mavericks.

San Antonio's largest lead was actually 46, but the deficit seemed larger to Dallas.

"We got a (butt-kicking), that's it," Shawn Marion said. "No need to explain it ... it was an old-fashioned [butt-kicking]."

The Spurs set a franchise record with 20 3-pointers, besting the record of 19 they set Dec. 8 in Charlotte. San Antonio also set a season high for largest margin of victory.

Tony Parker had 18 points, Kawhi Leonard added 17, Tim Duncan 15 and Stephen Jackson 14 for the Spurs (21-8).

Darren Collison scored 15 points to lead Dallas (12-16), which lost its third straight. Vince Carter added 13 points and Chris Kaman had 10.

San Antonio also had 33 assists, a season-high 17 steals and forced 20 turnovers.

"We don't create that many turnovers normally," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "So that's a heck of a night for us as far as steals are concerned. That's not going to happen very often. We were fortunate it was one of those nights when your opponent has a bad night and you have a great night and it ends up like tonight."

It came on the night Nowitzki returned following surgery on his right knee Oct. 19 after battling soreness the previous season.

He entered with 6:28 left in the first quarter to a hearty mix of cheers and boos. The former MVP quickly picked up a rebound for Dallas and finished with eight points -- going 3 for 4 from the field -- and six rebounds in 20 minutes.

Nowitzki decided to play less than an hour before tipoff after testing the knee during practice last week.

"Before the game I felt decent, so I said I'm going to give it a go," Nowitzki said. "I felt actually good out there. I thought the wind was OK, but my legs were a little heavy there after a couple of trips up and down but I thought I fought through it OK."

Nowitzki's presence did little to stifle San Antonio's outside shooting. The Spurs were 20 from 30 from 3-point range and shot 56 percent from the field overall.

"Luckily it felt good tonight," Green said. "Some nights you have it and some nights you don't. Good thing we had it tonight. Not just myself, but everybody else on the team.

Manu Ginobili and Boris Diaw hit consecutive 3s to push San Antonio's lead to 55-45 with 3:42 left in the first half.

Green's seventh 3-pointer gave the Spurs a 77-57 lead with 7 minutes left in the third quarter.

The Spurs led by as many as 46, while the Mavs' lone lead came at 4-3 on Kaman's jumper with 10:30 left in the first quarter.

Tiago Splitter's dunk gave San Antonio a 100-66 lead at the close of the third. Splitter ran to the sideline after the dunk with a huge a smile, where he was immediately greeted with a low five by an equally happy Duncan.

Dallas was outscored 36-14 in the third quarter. San Antonio closed the quarter on a 31-9 run.

"We need to keep on working," Nowitzki said. "We've got a lot of areas to improve. We might not be as talented as some teams on the top, but if we're not, you have to make it up with how you play and compete and it's just not there."

Every active Spurs player scored and played at least eight minutes.


  • Spurs G Gary Neal left the game early in the fourth quarter with a strained right calf. His status is unknown.
  • San Antonio has dominated Dallas at home, holding a 51-26 advantage against their intrastate rivals.
  • Seven players have led the Spurs in individual scoring this season.
  • San Antonio has had 12 players start this season, the most in the NBA.
  • The Spurs lead the league in assists at 25.4 per game and the team's bench leads all reserves at 11.3.
  • Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle let official Karl Lane know he was not happy with the officiating. "Does counting fouls lose you the game? It's so lopsided, it's ridiculous." The fouls were 8-4 in favor of the Spurs at that point. The Spurs closed the game with 22 fouls compared to 18 for the Mavericks.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Kawhi Leonard puts in 17 points as the Spurs use a balanced attack to spoil Dirk Nowitzki's season debut.  (US Presswire)
Kawhi Leonard puts in 17 points as the Spurs use a balanced attack to spoil Dirk Nowitzki's season debut. (US Presswire)
Dallas (12-16)2626142591
San Antonio (21-8) «33313629129
DAL:D. Collison 15 Pts
DAL:D. Nowitzki 6 Reb
DAL:O. Mayo 6 Ast
SA:D. Green 25 Pts
SA:T. Splitter 7 Reb
SA:M. Ginobili 9 Ast
Players of the Game
DallasSan Antonio

Darren Collison

Danny Green

Related Video

September 28, 2015
Are the Mavericks done before the season even starts? (1:49)
September 17, 2015
Can Dallas repair Deron Williams?
July 30, 2015
State of the Mavericks
July 29, 2015
Mo Ndour
O. Mayo, SG283-81-22627
S. Marion, PF232-70-05204
C. Kaman, C215-90-032010
D. Jones, SG201-73-62415
D. Jones, SG192-42-43127
D. Collison, PG256-93-422315
D. Nowitzki, PF203-41-26018
V. Carter, SG195-91-151113
J. Crowder, SF163-62-24049
E. Brand, PF141-40-02022
B. Wright, PF143-52-43218
R. Beaubois, PG120-20-01110
C. Douglas-Roberts, SG100-03-41103
D. Fisher, PGDid Not Play
J. Cunningham, SGDid Not Play
B. James, CDid Not Play
Totals 34-7418-2939221891
San Antonio
T. Parker, PG285-96-716118
K. Leonard, SF266-112-242017
T. Duncan, PF237-151-254115
D. Green, SF239-100-040125
T. Splitter, PF211-43-47025
S. Jackson, SF225-82-331114
M. Ginobili, SG212-41-14926
B. Diaw, PF193-50-03317
N. De Colo, PG131-30-03542
D. Blair, PF121-40-04042
P. Mills, PG123-40-00137
M. Bonner, PF113-30-02118
G. Neal, PG91-40-01113
C. Joseph, PGDid Not Play
Totals 47-8415-19413322129
Other Games
Phi 92 Final
Brook 95
Min 91 Final
NY 94
Utah 97 Final
Orl 93
LAC 103 Final
Pho 77
Port 96 Final
Sac 108