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NBA: Dallas 97, Portland 94

April 14, 2012 at 1:28 AM   |   Comments

PORTLAND, Ore., April 14 (UPI) -- A dunk by Brandan Wright with 4 seconds left finally ended a Portland comeback bid Friday and gave Dallas a 97-94 win over the Trail Blazers.

Dallas led by 20 points entering the fourth quarter, but that advantage was cut to just three when Jamal Crawford made a layup with 8 seconds to go.

The Trail Blazers did not even bother to defend Wright as he coasted in for his dunk, but that basket turned out to be critical when Portland's Wesley Matthews hit a 3-pointer just before the buzzer to account for the final score.

It was a key Dallas win in its bid to wrap up a playoff berth. The Mavericks climbed within a game of Memphis for the No. 5 spot in the Western Conference and are now 1 1/2 games ahead of both Denver and Houston, who are tied for the seventh and eighth positions.

Dirk Nowitzki led Dallas with 24 points and Delonte West added 21. Nicolas Batum scored 20 for the Trail Blazers.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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