Posted March 28, 2013 on AP on Fox
Dirk Nowitzki and his Dallas Mavericks teammates pledged earlier this season not to shave until the team returned to the .500 mark. The Mavericks are close to getting their razors ready and will try to even their record for the first time in 3 1/2 months with Thursday night's visit from a surging Indiana Pacers team that's approaching full health. With nine wins in the last 12 contests, Dallas is now within one game of .500 for the first time since it was 11-11 on Dec. 12. The Mavericks (35-36) are also making a considerable push for a 13th consecutive playoff berth, now sitting just 1 1/2 games behind the eighth-place Los Angeles Lakers after beginning March five games out of postseason position. "We've been fighting to get to (.500). I feel like we're playing our basketball. The boys are playing well and better off each other," Nowitzki said. "It's a good time to play your best basketball. We'll see how far we can take it. "I'm ready to get this (beard) off. It's a big outing for us Thursday against a very tough team. That'll be a big game for us." Beating Indiana would give the Mavericks their longest home winning streak of the season at four. Dallas improved to 3-1 on its six-game homestand Tuesday with a 109-102 overtime victory against the Los Angeles Clippers. Nowitzki had eight of his season-high 33 points in the extra period, and was among six Dallas players to score in double figures. "We've got to find a way to win those close games. We've been doing a lot better the last two weeks or so," Nowitzki said. "We've found a decent mixture the last couple of weeks of leadership and playing well together. Hopefully, we can keep it up." The Pacers (45-27) haven't had David West for the last six games due to a sprained lower back, but they earned their fifth win in that stretch Wednesday, 100-91 in Houston, behind Roy Hibbert's season-high 28 points and 13 rebounds. "This was Roy Hibbert's best overall game," coach Frank Vogel said. "And with David West out, we needed him to score more and be more of a post presence and he was terrific on the offensive end as well." Hibbert may not have to do nearly as much Thursday. West is expected to return against the Mavericks as is Danny Granger, who has missed all but five games this season but should be available to come off the bench down the stretch. West had 20 points on 9-of-11 shooting and Paul George scored 30 in the most recent visit to Dallas, a 98-87 win on Feb. 3, 2012. The victory snapped the Pacers' seven-game skid at the American Airlines Center. Nowitzki had 30 points in the loss and is averaging 27.4 over his last 14 matchups with Indiana, his best performance against any opponent since the beginning of the 2004-05 season. He didn't played in the Pacers' 103-83 win on Nov. 16 in Indianapolis. Lance Stephenson was one of six Pacers in double figures in that contest, finishing with 12, and he had a season-high 21 points Wednesday after missing a game with a strained hip flexor. The win in Houston kept Indiana five games ahead of Chicago in the Central Division and tied with New York for the second seed in the Eastern Conference.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Dirk Nowitzki invites barber to shave his beard after Pacers game

Later tonight, the Dallas Mavericks will face the Indiana Pacers and a special guest will be joining the team in the locker room.For those of you who noticed, Dirk Nowitzki has been growing his beard out for the last couple months   and he's finally decided that the facial hair needs to be removed.We learn more from Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News about the loss of Dirk...
CLIPPING TIME

Mavs invite barber to game

The Dallas Mavericks players invited an interesting guest to their next game. It's a barber. See what the reason is for their move.

Mavs can shave beards with win over Pacers

Dirk Nowitzki and his Dallas Mavericks teammates pledged earlier this season not to shave until the team returned to the .500 mark. The Mavericks are close to getting their razors ready and will try to even their record for the first time in 3 12 months with Thursday night's visit from a surging Indiana Pacers team that's approaching full health. With nine wins in the last...

Dallas Mavericks To Have Their Barber At Next Game Vs. Pacers

O.J. Mayo, Dirk Nowitzki, Vince Carter, Chris Kaman, Elton Brand and Jae Crowder have all remained true to their pact of not shaving until their team got to .500. That was at 7 games under in the first week of February.  Now at 35-36, the Mavs will have a chance Thursday night to realize their goal and finally shave the beards off. The players are looking forward to a win so much...

Mavericks win wild OT match against Clippers

DALLAS (AP) -- Dirk Nowitzki scored a season-high 33 points, including the first eight in overtime, and the Dallas Mavericks beat one of the top four teams in the Western Conference for the first time this season with a 109-102 victory against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night. Chris Paul also had a season-high 33 for the Clippers, who lost the opener of a four-game road...

Jae Crowder Morphs Into Brandan Wright Like One of The X-Men (Video)

  Dallas Mavericks small forward Jae Crowder might be a mutant.  Check out this video of him shape-shifting into Brandan Wright:    Let’s just hope Jae Crowder/Brandan Wright knows that with great power comes great responsibility.   Follow me on Twitter @HookTSB

Dallas Mavericks Not Shaving Just Yet

The Dallas Mavericks want to shave. With one win to go in order to get back to .500, the guys had a barber on hand in case they won Thursday night against the Indiana Pacers. One more win and they can finally get rid of the scruff. One win was all they needed, and they could break out the Bics. Now you can make it two. The Mavericks were in a good position to get the...

Lamar Odom says he would apologize to Mark Cuban, feels no guilt for bad season

Lamar Odom had the worst season of his career with the Dallas Mavericks last year. When the Mavericks acquired the 12-year veteran, they thought they would be getting the same type of role player the Los Angeles Lakers had during the seven years prior. That did not happen, and Odom’s only season in Dallas ended with the team paying him to not be on the roster. As you might expect...

Mavericks' beards stay after big loss to Pacers

DALLAS (AP) -- Paul George had 24 points and eight rebounds and the Indiana Pacers broke open a close game in the third quarter to beat the Dallas Mavericks 103-78 on Thursday night. George scored 13 points in the third, including eight in a 20-5 run that broke a tie game at halftime. The first-place Pacers won their fourth straight and have a half-game lead for the second-best...

Roy Hibbert, Pacers Shut Down Mavericks’ Beard-Shaving ‘Gimmick,’ Keep Dallas Below .500

DALLAS — Paul George and the Indiana Pacers went on an offensive surge in the third quarter to sink the Dallas Mavericks, and, in the process, they sunk the Mavericks’ chance to get above .500 — and shave their beards. George had 24 points and eight rebounds, and the Pacers broke open a close game in the third quarter to beat the Mavericks 103-78 on Thursday night. With the...

Lamar Odom Feels No Guilt About Early Departure From Dallas Last Season

Lamar Odom received a roar of boos every time he touched the ball in his return to Dallas Tuesday, and though he says he’d apologize to Mark Cuban for the way things ended last season, he feels no guilt about his early departure from the team. According to Tim MacMahon, ESPN Dallas: “Guilty? No, no, no,” Odom said when asked if he felt guilt about the way his season in Dallas...

NBA center Chris Kaman does not like Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade

According to The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Mavericks center Chris Kaman does not like Dwyane Wade.  Kaman said, I just never really got along with Dwyane Wade.  I guess I [...]
NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.