Dirk Nowitzki scored 22 and the Dallas Mavericks clinched the No. 7 spot in the Western Conference playoffs with a 101-92 win over the Utah Jazz on Monday night, leaving one remaining postseason slot.
Utah (40-41) lost control of its own destiny and needs to beat the Lakers on Wednesday and for the Rockets (40-41) to lose to the Kings. Houston holds the tiebreaker against the Jazz if they finish with the same record.
Dallas rode its two biggest stars to victory as Nowitzki hit four 3-pointers and added 11 rebounds. Deron Williams scored 23 of his own against his former team.
The latest news from around North Texas.
Gordon Hayward finished with 26, but was 1 for 9 from 3-point range. The Jazz struggled to shoot the ball and were 2 for 18 from behind the arc in the second half.
The Mavs took a 50-46 lead into halftime after leading by as much as eight in the first half. The Jazz struggled to keep up with Nowitzki in the first quarter, in which he scored 10, and Williams in the second, when he scored 16.
Mavericks: Nowitzki hit four 3-pointers and now has 1,700 in his career to become the 15th player in NBA history with at least 1,700 career triples. ... Nowitzki needs two made free throws to become the seventh player in NBA history -- and the first 7-footer -- with 7,000 career made free throws.
Jazz: Starting center Rudy Gobert hit the floor with when he rolled his right ankle fighting for a rebound. He immediately went to the locker room and did not return. ... Trey Lyles started his second consecutive game with Derrick Favors dealing with right knee soreness. Favors played but clearly wasn't fully healthy.
The Mavericks are the second most experienced team in the NBA and the Jazz are the least. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said before the game that helps his team. "Experience is valuable," Carlisle said. "We've got a lot of guys that have been in a lot of playoff games and a lot of big regular season games. There were some things you can remind them of. But as the second-most experienced team in the league, I don't think there's a lot I need to say to them."
The Mavericks host the Spurs on Wednesday.
The Jazz travel to face the Lakers on Wednesday.