DALLAS -- For a moment, Wednesday's game with the Houston Rockets looked like it was going to get away from the Dallas Mavericks.
But the Mavs (35-28) put on a fourth-quarter surge en route to defeating the Rockets, 117-110, at the American Airlines Center.
The Rockets had everything going their way and were ahead, 84-76, late in the third period. But the Mavs kicked into high gear and went on a 26-10 run to go up, 102-94, with 4:05 remaining in the game.
Dirk Nowitzki, who led the Mavs with 35 points, had nine points in that game-deciding run.
Houston cut it to 111-107 with 55.5 seconds on a four-point play by Kyle Lowry. But Jason Terry fed Dirk Nowitzki for a layup and a 113-107 lead with 36.2 ticks to go.
Other than Nowitzki, the Mavs got 23 points from Vince Carter, 19 points from Jason Terry, 12 from Jaosn Kidd and 11 points form Delonte West.
The loss serious crippled the Rockets' playoff chances. Houston is now 32-30 on the season.
Carter tallied 10 Mavs points in a row in the first period, which ended tied at 27-27. Two other Mavs' players also had a hot hand in the first half.
Terry popped in 10 of the Mavs' first 12 points of the second quarter, and Kidd scored the Mavs' final nine points of the second period, which ended knotted at 55 apiece.
The Rockets got 20 points and 10 assists from Goran Dragic, 18 points from Luis Scola, 16 points from Courtney Lee, 14 points from Chase Budinger and 11 points and 17 reobunds from Marcus Camby.
Dallas plays its final home game Friday against the Golden State Warirors before finishing the season with two road games -- Saturday in Chicago and Apr. 26 in Atlanta.
-- Dwain Price
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