Prior to be hounded by Perkins, Serge Ibaka played commendably as OKC's primary defender on Nowitzki. Nick Collison also came in on relief.
Asked what it's like to be defended by Ibaka and Perkins, Nowitzki said: "They're both long. One time I drove middle on Perk and I think Harden came over and got his hand on the ball. The other time I came off a down screen. I read the play wrong. I thought that Perk might have trailed me so I tried to go middle but he shot the gap so he was right there when I came and poked the ball out."
Nowitzki still finished with 25 points, shooting 8 for 18 from the field and 9 for 10 at the free-throw line.
The primary problem in the fourth quarter, Nowitzki said, was the Mavs' inability to get the ball to sixth man Jason Terry, who shot 8 for 10 from the field, 4 for 5 from 3-point range and finished with 20 points, but had just one field-goal attempt in the fourth period.
"So (we've) got the keep attacking and we've got to find a way to get Jet (Jason Terry) the ball," Nowitzki said. "He had the hot hand and we couldn't even get him the ball in the fourth quarter. They denied him everywhere and we've got to counter that."