"We might have tried to double him, tried something," Sloan said. "But they still had some pretty good shooters out there on the floor, and they were into a rhythm where I felt like if we go off and leave (Jason) Terry or even Jason Kidd ... you're looking at 3s to have to defend against.
"We pushed him to the short side of the floor one time, I think. The rest of the time he went to the long side, where he had a lot more room to operate and get on top of the basket.
"He's a terrific player," Sloan added.
"That's who he is. That's what he's been ever since he's been in the league."
Nowitzki's 29 in the quarter topped Mark Aguirre's Mavs record of 24 in 1984, and were just four off the NBA record for points in a quarter of 33 shared by San Antonio's George Gervin (in the second vs. the New Orleans Jazz in 1978) and Denver's Carmelo Anthony (in the third vs. Minnesota last season).
The late Wilt Chamberlain holds the record for most points in the final quarter with 31 in 1962.
"I got every play down the stretch," Nowitzki said, "and I was able to deliver."
And the Jazz couldn't do a darn thing to stop it.
"He just took the game over," Sloan said.
"You can deny him all you want, but he's still gonna get the ball. He's just that clever in what he does. He'll work you and work you until he gets in a position he likes and that is an advantage for him. I could second-guess myself to death on that."
Editor's note: The original Online story by Jody Genessy is below as a reference for many of the comments generated before the final game story from Tim Buckley.
Forget the lightbulb question. How many men does it take to screw up a much-needed Utah Jazz victory and single-handedly overcome a 16-point deficit?
One German, that's all.
Dirk Nowitzki went on an absolute unbelievable hot streak to dig Dallas out of a huge hole and deliver a painful blow to the Jazz in a 96-85 comeback victory for the Mavericks at American Airlines Center on Tuesday night.
Nowitzki finished with a game-high 40 points and erased the Jazz's 67-52 lead at the beginning of the fourth quarter in a stellar shooting exhibition. The big forward, who also had 11 rebounds, scored 28 points in the fourth quarter alone and threw in 25 of his team's 29 points during one scorching stretch.
This was the second major meltdown for the Jazz in the fourth quarter in two nights. On Monday, Utah was outscored by 17 points in the final 10-plus minutes while getting blown out 113-96 by Houston. The Mavs, who trailed by as many as 16, outscored Utah 44-18 in the final quarter to pull off this stunner.
The big blow sent a now-reeling Utah team to a 1-3 record, with a tough game against San Antonio at home on Thursday night.
Nowitzki did actually get some help in leading Dallas to a 3-1 mark. Jason Kidd, who had a 19-point night, drilled a nail-in-the-coffin 3-pointer to give the Mavs a 90-83 lead after his teammates's explosive run.
Deron Williams led Utah with 22 points, Mehmet Okur added 14 and Carlos Boozer and Andrei Kirilenko each scored a dozen. Okur also had 14 rebounds.
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