(SportsNetwork.com) - The NBA's top scoring team meets the league's worst on defense, as the Dallas Mavericks entertain Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers Friday night from American Airlines Center.
The Mavericks are averaging 108.9 points and have scored 100 or more points in five straight and 10 of 12 games this season. It appears that trend will continue with the Lakers in town and they've allowed 110.2 ppg.
Dallas has won five in a row and recorded back-to-back wins in Charlotte and Washington. In Wednesday's slim 105-102 victory over the much-improved Wizards, Monta Ellis scored 24 of his season-high 34 points in the first half and Brandan Wright and J.J. Barea each posted 14 points off the bench.
"Monta kept us going in the first quarter," said Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle. "He had 18 points and we had two other guys that scored. He carried us on his back."
Ellis has scored 30 or more points twice in the last three games and leads Dallas with 19.7 ppg. Dallas went 25-of-29 from the foul line with Ellis hitting 12 of his 14 free throws.
The Wizards led 95-94 with under three minutes to go, but Dallas outscored them 11-4 to take a 105-99 lead. There were 15 lead changes and nine ties.
Mavs superstar Dirk Nowitzki and Chandler Parsons scored 13 and 11 points, respectively, while Tyson Chandler grabbed a season high-tying 16 rebounds to go with five points.
Dallas is averaging 114.4 points during the winning streak and opponents are scoring 93.4 points in that stretch. It is 9-0 this season when scoring at least 105 points.
The scoring barrage has the Mavericks 9-3 after 12 games for the first time since 2009-10, when they started with a 10-3 record. Dallas has won three in a row at home and is 5-1 in Big D.
In Nowitzki notes, he has Elvin Hayes (27,313) in his sights for eighth on the all-time scoring list with 27,015. Nowitzki (9,493) is 17th on the all-time field goals made list, trailing the great Oscar Robertson (9,508). He's 31st on the all-time games played list with 1,200 and Shaquille O'Neal is 30th with 1,207. Juwan Howard sits 29th (1,208) and Dale Ellis is 28th (1,209).
Los Angeles will close out its three-game road trip and two-step through Texas Friday night. It has won a season-best two in a row after a 1-9 start and recorded a 98-92 triumph in Houston on Wednesday.
NBA leading scorer Bryant (27.5 ppg) led the way with 29 points and also had seven assists and five rebounds. Jordan Hill posted a double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds, and Nick Young netted 16 in his second game back from a right thumb injury. Hill has a team-leading six double-doubles.
Bryant and the Lakers used a 12-1 run late in the game to erase a 10-point deficit. LA outscored Houston, 28-17, in the final 12 minutes and didn't allow a field goal on the final five possessions.
It marked the first time this season the Lakers won when trailing after the third quarter. They had a 47-38 advantage on the boards as well.
"Look, we had a bad start," Bryant said on the team's website. "Are we a 3-9 team? No. We're a much better team than that. We got off to a really bad start, but we'll (get better)."
Bryant has led the team in scoring 10 times this season and has posted 20 or more on 10 separate occasions. He is approaching the great Michael Jordan (32,292) for third on the all-time scoring list with 32,030. Bryant is one block away from matching James Worthy (624) for sixth on the team's all-time list. Andrew Bynum is fifth with 628.
After visiting the Mavericks, the Lakers will play four straight at home versus Denver, Memphis, Minnesota and Toronto.
Los Angeles lost all three games against the Mavs last season, but is still 9-4 in the past 13 encounters between the Western foes. The Lakers have lost their previous two visits to Dallas after a five-game win streak there.