Why the Mavs won: Dirk Nowitzki poured in 21 points Friday night and the Dallas Mavericks reached the midway point of the season with an 83-77 victory over the Chicago Bulls at the United Center. Nowitzki also produced the game’s biggest defensive play when he blocked a jumper by Derrick Rose with the Mavs up by one with less than three minutes left in the game.
Key players: The Mavs were led by Nowitzki’s 21 points and seven rebounds. Also, Deron Williams finished with 18 points and six assists.
Key stat: The Bulls missed 17 of their 19 shots from 3-point range.
Records: Mavs 23-18, Bulls 23-16