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Love, Rubio lead T-wolves over Mavs, 123-122 in OT

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 19, 2014 at 11:47 pm •  Published: March 19, 2014
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DALLAS (AP) — Ricky Rubio hasn't given up on the idea of Minnesota making the playoffs.

The case is a little easier to make after the Timberwolves avoided what would have been a disastrous loss in Dallas.

Rubio had a triple-double, Kevin Love scored the last of his 35 points with the go-ahead basket late in overtime, and the Timberwolves hung on for a 123-122 victory over the Mavericks on Wednesday night after blowing several leads.

Minnesota broke a six-game stretch of alternating wins and losses with a second straight victory to move two games over .500 for the first time since Nov. 23.

The Timberwolves (34-32) are still 5½ games behind Dallas and Memphis for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference with 16 games to go. But at least they didn't lose after squandering a 22-point lead in the first half and a 13-point edge with 7 minutes to go.

"It was a big game against a tough team who is fighting for the playoffs, too," said Rubio, who had 22 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds for his third career triple-double. "We want to try to catch up to them."

Dirk Nowitzki scored 27 for Dallas and put the Mavericks ahead with a fadeaway over Love with 33 seconds left in overtime before Love scored on a jump hook with 17 seconds to go.

Nowitzki missed on another try over Love in the final seconds as the Mavericks saw a three-game winning streak end and missed a chance to move a season-high 15 games over .500.

"This is a tough one," said Nowitzki, who had his second straight tough shooting night at 11 of 27. "This feels like a playoff loss. It really does. I don't even know what to say."

Monta Ellis scored the last 12 Dallas points of regulation on a three-point play and three consecutive 3-pointers, the last one giving the Mavericks their first lead since early in the first quarter at 113-111. Rubio answered with a pair of free throws for the tie with 50 seconds left.

Nowitzki missed a 3-pointer to finish his 0-for-5 shooting in the fourth quarter, but Kevin Martin missed from just inside the arc and Robbie Hummel missed from just outside it for Minnesota. Dallas' Devin Harris was short on a mid-court heave at the buzzer in regulation.

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