Basketball - Mills steps in to lead Spurs to win over Mavericks

San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills, starting in place of injured Tony Parker, took full advantage of the opportunity with a game-high 26 points and put a dent in the play-off hopes of the Dallas Mavericks.

Reuters
Basketball - Mills steps in to lead Spurs to win over Mavericks
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San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills shoots over Dallas Mavericks guard Devin Harris (Reuters)

Spurs 109, Mavericks 100

Australian Mills, who made six three-pointers, scored 11 points in the third quarter as the Spurs outscored the Mavs 34-21 to reclaim the lead and closed out for an impressive road victory.

The Spurs (61-18) moved within one victory of clinching the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference as they recorded a franchise-record 30th road victory.

The Mavs (48-32) are struggling just to make the play-offs.

They have two games left, both against the two teams they are battling with for the final two play-off spots.

The magic number for Dallas to clinch a play-off spot remains two - any combination of Dallas wins and Memphis losses.

The defeat knocked the Mavericks back into the No. 8 spot, which in all likelihood would mean a first-round play-off matchup with the Spurs.

Dallas lost all four games to San Antonio this season.

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Nuggets 100, Warriors 99

Kenneth Faried hit a 10-foot turnaround jumper in the lane with half a second remaining to lift the Denver Nuggets to a stunning road victory that prevented the Golden State Warriors from clinching a play-off spot.

The Warriors appeared headed to their clinching win when Stephen Curry drove through the Denver defense to hit a five-foot flip shot that put Golden State up 99-98 with 4.7 seconds left.

Following a timeout, Faried took an inbounds pass and drove into the key guarded by Warriors forward Draymond Green. Faried then spun and connected from in front of the hoop to stun a Golden State crowd that was preparing to celebrate a return to the postseason.

Curry missed a long three-point attempt for Golden State as time expired.

Winning for the second time in two nights, the Nuggets (35-44) dominated the boards, outrebounding Golden State 63-38, as they came from 20 points down in the second period.

The loss dropped the Warriors 2 1/2 games behind Portland in the race for the fifth play-off spot in the Western Conference. Golden State (48-30) must win at least one of their final four games to clinch a spot in the postseason.

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