NEW ORLEANS (AP) — CJ McCollum scored 13 of his 32 points in the final four minutes and the New Orleans Pelicans held off the Dallas Mavericks 113-106 on Wednesday night.
McCollum’s compelling finish came after each team lost a top player. The Pelicans’ Brandon Ingram left late in the second quarter with a sprained right ankle after scoring 12 points. Dallas star guard Luka Doncic left in the third with a strained left thigh after scoring 15 points.
The Mavericks were down by as many as 19 in the third quarter and by double digits well into the fourth. But the Mavs suddenly surged within striking distance with a 12-0 run that began with Davis Bertans 3, Kyrie Irving’s 4-point play on a 3 as he was fouled, and Christian Wood’s 3-point play on a layup as he was fouled.
Irving capped the spurt with driving layup along the baseline that made it 97-94 with 4:12 left.
That’s when McCollum snapped the run with two clutch baskets — a 14-foot pull-up and a 3. He added two more 3s and a floating bank shot to make it 110-103 in the final minute, and New Orleans held on from there.
Trey Murphy III scored 16 for New Orleans. Herb Jones and Jaxson Hayes each added 14 points for the Pelicans.
Irving scored 27 points and Tim Hardaway Jr added 17 points for Dallas.
Coming off a four-point victory over Utah on Tuesday night, Dallas faded quickly after a promising first few minutes. After hitting two of their first four 3s and going up 14-6 on Powell’s alley-oop dunk of Doncic’s lob, the Mavs missed 13 of their next 14 shots from deep.
By the end of the first quarter, the Pelicans had tied it at 24 on rookie Dyson Daniels’ 3-pointer.
New Orleans then opened the second quarter with eight straight points on McCollum’s 3, Hayes’ alley-oop dunk and Naji Marshall’s banked 3, and went on to lead by as many as 18 before taking a 59-43 lead into halftime.
Despite Ingram’s inability to return after the second quarter, New Orleans maintained a comfortable lead for most of the second half.
Jones scored eight of his points in the third quarter, when Murphy hit two 3s, and New Orleans led 90-74 after Murphy’s third 3 of the half early in the fourth.
Mavericks: Wood finished with 15 points and Jaden Hardy 11. … Finished 16 of 46 (34.8%) from 3-point range. Doncic was assessed a technical foul in the first quarter while staring down official Natalie Sago after making a driving shot on which he apparently thought he’d also been fouled. … Reggie Bullock missed the game with a bruised right quadriceps, Maxi Kleber was out with a right hamstring injury and center JaVale McGee was sidelined by a sprained right ankle.
Pelicans: The club announced before tip-off that All-Star forward Zion Williamson will be out at least two more weeks while he recovers from a Jan. 2 right hamstring injury. … Shot 50.6% (42 of 83) overall and 48.1% (13 of 27) from deep. … Outrebounded Dallas 49-34.