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Suns shine bright in double overtime

From the Associated Press

Steve Nash played like a most valuable player down the stretch and Amare Stoudemire had 41 points and 10 rebounds, carrying the Phoenix Suns to a 129-127 double-overtime victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night in a thriller between the NBA’s top teams.

Nash scored 10 points in the final minute of regulation, forcing overtime with a three-point basket in the closing seconds. Then Dallas’ Jason Terry had five points in the final 48 seconds of the first overtime, including a three-pointer with time running out to force another period.

With Stoudemire adding to his 16-of-19 shooting, the Suns led throughout the second overtime -- but it took a missed eight-footer by Dirk Nowitzki as time expired to secure a win that ended Dallas’ 23-game home winning streak and tightened the race for the top seed in the playoffs.

Nash had 32 points, 16 assists and eight rebounds, sending Phoenix to its sixth straight win and 11th in 12 games. That moved the Suns within 2 1/2 games of the Mavericks for the best record in the league.

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Nowitzki, considered Nash’s top challenger in the MVP race, had 30 points, 16 rebounds and six assists. He had eight points and seven rebounds in the third quarter, when Dallas turned a once 16-point deficit into a 15-point lead going into the fourth.

The Suns made their first eight shots and went 10 of 12 in the fourth to make it tight again. Dallas helped set up Nash’s fabulous finish by missing four foul shots in the last minute of regulation.

The Mavericks have gone from winning 17 straight to losing consecutive games for the first time since their 0-4 start. They hadn’t lost at home since Dec. 7.


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