Mavs hope to finish .500, face Hornets in Big D

Neither the Dallas Mavericks or New Orleans Hornets are going to the postseason, but they will finish off the regular season Wednesday night in Big D.

The Mavericks reached .500 for the first time since December when they beat the Hornets in the Big Easy Sunday. They shaved the beards they'd been growing since midseason, then fell to the Memphis Grizzlies at home on Monday night, 103-97.

Against the Grizzlies, Dirk Nowitzki (26), Vince Carter (22) and Mike James (14) were the only double-digit scorers for the Mavericks.

Carter moved past Clyde Drexler into 27th place on the NBA's all-time scoring list.

"When you accomplish something like that and you don't pull out the win it's always tough," Carter said. "I mean, I'm very thankful for the milestone. It's just amazing."

The Mavs had a 12-season playoff streak snapped, but they will be playing hard on Wednesday.

"Look, we've got one left and we've got a chance to avoid a losing record," said head coach Rick Carlisle. "I think that is significant, so we've got to get ready for Wednesday. Hey, we played a great game against New Orleans (Sunday night) and the challenge is going to be to duplicate it on Wednesday."

The Hornets haven't played since Sunday's loss to Dallas, their fourth in a row.

New Orleans didn't do much well on Sunday night. The Hornets allowed the Mavs to shoot 52 percent from the field and only managed to shoot 38 percent themselves.

The Hornets fell behind by 14 at the end of the first quarter and that was too much to overcome.

"We obviously didn't have everybody ready to play today and that is solely on me," admitted head coach Monty Williams. "There is no other person to look at but me as a coach. When you don't have your guys ready to play, there is nobody else to look at. That is the bottom line."

Six Hornets scored in double figures led by Ryan Anderson, who had 20 on 4- for-7 shooting from long range. He also pulled down 12 rebounds. Robin Lopez also registered a double-double with 10 points and 13 boards.

After this game finishes, the Hornets will be known as the Pelicans.

The Hornets won the first matchup of the season between the two teams in Dallas. That win on Jan. 5 snapped a six-game road losing streak in this series for New Orleans.