Charlotte, NC – It took eight-plus seasons, but the Charlotte Bobcats finally beat the Dallas Mavericks.
Kemba Walker had a spectacular all-around game with 26 points, six rebounds, seven assists and eight steals in a 101-97 overtime win Saturday night at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Mavericks had won the first 16 games against the Bobcats in the regular season since the franchise expanded into the league in 2004.
Until Saturday, the Bobcats had never cracked the century mark against the Mavs. That included a 126-99 score a week ago, when O.J. Mayo made seven 3- point shots and scored 30 for Dallas.
But this time the Bobcats tied the game with 2.8 seconds left in regulation thanks to a driving layup from Ramon Sessions. Byron Mullens put in the go- ahead dunk in overtime.
Mullens tied a career-high with 14 rebounds, while Michael Kidd-Gilchrist recorded 25 points and 12 boards for the Bobcats, who lost their previous three games. Sessions scored 12.
Mayo had 22 points, but the Mavericks failed to hold a late lead in regulation and lost their second in a row.
"We missed some good shots and made some poor decisions," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle admitted. "This team has a lot to learn about winning. This is a very painful lesson."
Vince Carter's 3-point shot gave the Mavs an 89-87 edge with 1:36 left in the fourth quarter, and Dallas looked to have secured the win after Sessions turned the ball over following a poor pass to Brendan Haywood in the lane.
Mayo drained two foul shots with 26.6 seconds left, but Haywood dunked off a feed from Sessions. Haywood was fouled by Darren Collison, but the ensuing free throw caromed off the back of the rim with 22.9 seconds to go.
Sessions' layup try was blocked by Carter, but the ball was deflected to the corner, where Kidd-Gilchrist was double-teamed. His pass hit off Haywood before coming to Sessions, who drove into the lane for the tying layup with 2.8 seconds left.
"If things aren't going good for us the first, second or third quarter, that fourth quarter, that's really when we have to step in and contribute in our veteran ways," Sessions said. "I think both me and Haywood did that tonight."
Carter missed a fadeaway jumper as time expired.
Mullens jammed off a feed from Sessions for a 95-93 margin, and Walker expanded it to four by making a layup with 1 1/2 minutes left.
Collison put in a layup with 24 seconds left, but Kidd-Gilchrist and Sessions each sank a pair from the charity stripe to seal the outcome.
Walker went 7-of-10 from the field for 17 first-half points, but the Mavericks led 55-44 at the break. Dallas was ahead by as many as 15 in the third quarter, but led only 73-68 headed to the fourth.
Ben Gordon had 11 points for Charlotte, which went 3-of-20 from beyond the arc ... Carter scored 19 and Collison 14 ... This was Kidd-Gilchrist's first career double-double.