DALLAS -- Monta Ellis scored 23 points and the Dallas Mavericks captured their fourth straight victory by defeating the New Orleans Pelicans 108-89 Wednesday night at American Airlines Center.
The win gave the Mavs (36-23) a 4-0 series sweep of the Pelicans this season.
Coupled with Chicago's103-83 win over the Golden State Warriors -- also on Wednesday -- the Mavs are now in sixth place in the Western Conference standings with 23 games left. The Mavs host the Bulls on Friday.
Other than Ellis, the Mavs got 18 points from Dirk Nowitzki, 17 from Vince Carter, 12 by Wayne Ellington, and 10 from Shawn Marion.
The Pelicans were dealt a serious blow when All-Star forward Anthony Davis sprained his left shoulder in the first half. Davis left for good with 3:58 remaining in the second period and finished with six points, a game-high nine rebounds and two blocks in 13 minutes.
Eric Gordon led New Orleans with 19 points and Brian Roberts scored 17.
With no Davis to contend with, the Mavs had a decisive edge and took advantage of the situation. Dallas built a 49-43 lead at intermission and it grew to 67-56 following a 3-pointer by Jose Calderon early in the third period.
But the Pelicans cut it to 67-62 with 3:52 remaining in the third period. However, a dunk by Brandan Wright, a bucket from Marion, a layup by Ellis, a pair of free throws from Carter and three free throws from Nowitzki put the Mavs ahead 78-64 with 38.2 seconds left in the third period.
With Dallas applying more pressure, the Mavs eventually mounted a 93-71 lead midway through the fourth quarter and won going away.
-- Dwain Price
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