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Kyrie Irving 3 seals Cleveland Cavaliers' OT win vs. Dallas Mavericks

By The Sports Xchange

DALLAS -- Cleveland guard Kyrie Irving drilled a deep 3-pointer with 13 seconds to go in overtime that sealed the Cavaliers' eighth consecutive victory, 110-107, over the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center.

Dallas guard Deron Williams thought he drew an offensive charge on Cavaliers forward LeBron James. But the whistle didn't blow, James passed up on an open jumper from 15 feet and passed way out to Irving, and what had been a frustrating shooting night for him turned into a Dallas soul-crusher.

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"I live for those moments and have confidence in my ability to hit that shot," Irving said.

The Mavs will look back at Tuesday night for a long time and wonder how they allowed James and the Cavaliers to escape with a win. Dallas jumped out early to a 23-7 lead, kept the Cavs at arm's length through three quarters and had a chance to win on their final possession in regulation.

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"We knew we weren't going to blow them out," said Mavs guard Wesley Matthews, who had a tough shooting night, going 3-of-11 from the field for 11 points. "We knew that the lead at some point was going to get chipped away. But this was our game. We should have won it and we didn't. Now we have to use that frustration and aggression to go get this win in OKC where we dropped a game we should have had."

Dallas (22-17) must regroup quickly for a game at Oklahoma City on Wednesday.

The Cavs (27-9) didn't crack 40 percent from the floor until overtime, heaved 44 3-point attempts and for much of the night Irving and forward Kevin Love couldn't buy a basket.

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Dallas forward Chandler Parsons, who compiled 25 points and eight rebounds, put the Mavs up 105-104 with 1:10 to go in OT, putting back an offensive rebound after a wild possession, which saw Dallas zipping the ball around the perimeter.

James, who finished with a game-high 27 points after taking just three shots in the fourth quarter, answered quickly with a driving layup to put Cleveland up 106-105.

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Williams missed a straightaway 3 to set up Irving's final basket to give him 22 points on eight of 20 shooting and three-for-eight from beyond the arc.

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Dirk Nowitzki had a chance to end the Cavs' seven-game win streak in the final seconds of regulation. Isolated on Cleveland guard Iman Shumpert at the top of the key, Shumpert's long right arm stripped Nowitzki before he could go up for a patented fallaway. Cleveland got the ball into the front court and called timeout with 0.9 seconds left, but failed to get off a shot on the inbounds play.

"It's not uncommon for Dirk to catch the ball at the nail, right at the middle of the foul line because of his great sense and feel to be able to maneuver himself for a pretty good look," Cavs coach David Blatt said. "And Iman just made a great play on the ball and was able to knock it away from him and save us there."

Cleveland, which trailed at times by as many as 11, didn't lead until a minute into the fourth quarter. The lead would change hands 10 times in the final quarter. In the final two minutes, the game was tied three times.

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Dallas sprinted to a 23-7 lead seven minutes into the game, but a 15-2 run to close the quarter got Cleveland to within 25-22.

The Mavs led by as many as nine in the second quarter and continually thwarted runs by the Cavs, who used five second-quarter steals to get to within three points five times, but they never could claw closer.

Cleveland had to feel fortunate to go to the locker room trailing just 52-47 considering it shot 35.4 percent from the floor -- although eight 3s helped. Dallas shot 58.3 percent.

"I thought it was a great game," Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said. "I am not mad; I am disappointed that we didn't make a couple of plays on both ends. We had some really good opportunities on offense and defensively we just couldn't hold our ground enough."

NOTES: Cleveland traded G Joe Harris to the Orlando Magic on Tuesday, according to Cleveland.com for salary cap relief. The deal will save the Cavaliers approximately $3 million in luxury tax payments and open up a roster spot. ... On news that former NBA G Baron Davis is making a comeback, Dallas owner Mark Cuban offered Davis an open invitation to begin his comeback trail with the Texas Legends, the Mavericks' D-League affiliate. ... Cavaliers G Mo Williams was excused by the team on Tuesday to deal with a family situation and missed Tuesday's game. Williams, who lives in Dallas during the offseason, has a basketball facility there named after him called The Mo Williams Academy. Cleveland practiced there Monday.

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