Despite a high fever pushing 102 degrees, Dirk Nowitzki played for the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday.
Nowitzki might not have had his best game of the NBA playoffs (only went six for nineteen and missed four simple shots), he did score 21 points and had a double double (11 rebounds) as the Mavericks defeated the Miami Heat 86-83 to tie the NBA Finals at 2.
Center Tyson Chandler also came up huge for Dallas in game four as he had 13 points and 16 rebounds.
Down 69-65 after three quarters, the Mavericks stuck with head coach Rick Carlisle’s excellent defensive minded game plan. Miami only scored 14 fourth quarter points.
Down the stretch, Nowitzki came up huge for Dallas with an important layup and Jason Terry scored two key free throws that put the Mavericks up by three.
With six seconds remaining, and the Heat threatening to tie the ball game, Dwyane Wade was unable to catch a pass from center court properly, and Mike Miller couldn’t get off a quality three point shot that turned out to be an air ball.
Game five is in Dallas on Thursday. Start time is 7pm on ABC.