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Dirk Nowitzki teases Harrison Barnes about stealing his plays

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When Harrison Barnes swung by the PBT Podcast recently, he talked about how Dirk Nowitzki — at that point still out of the lineup with a sore Achilles — had helped him because the plays hadn’t changed, just it was now Barnes getting the rock.

“The biggest thing he’s helped me with is just kind of where to get my shots, how to get into a flow, how to be aggressive,” Barnes said. “A lot of my plays are plays he’s been in for years. He knows the system better than anybody, he knows how to get his shot off better than anybody, so he’s been helping along through this process and he’s been a great mentor.”

That’s been happening a lot. Barnes moved from the three to the four for the final play against the Clippers so he could get the ball in a Nowitzki position, then hit a runner for the game winner.

Don’t think Nowitzki hasn’t noticed — or isn’t poking fun at Barnes for it.

Just to be clear, this was good natured. The two get along well. It’s easy to joke like that after wins, and Dallas picked up a good one at home Tuesday against a Wizards team that had come in hot. Also, Nowitzki recognizes he’s at the end of his career — either this summer or the one after — and that Barnes is the future. Nowitzki doesn’t want to go out in a bad shot gunning blaze of glory, he’s going to mentor the young player.

And with the two of them in the lineup, the Mavericks have won 5-of-9. They are not an automatic win for the opponent anymore.

Grizzlies’ James Ennis fouls out then hits half-court shot (video)

AP Photo/David Zalubowski
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Against the Pacers last night, James Ennis missed all three of his 3-point attempts… that counted. And he makes this one after fouling out?

Mike Conley more than picked up the slack to lead the Grizzlies to victory.

Pelicans’ Dante Cunningham jumps on scorer’s table, Anthony Davis jumps on him (video)

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The Pelicans are effectively out of the playoff race, but Dante Cunningham and Anthony Davis are still competing — even if it looks a little silly.

That tone and a big game from DeMarcus Cousins (29 points, 16 rebounds, six assists) led to a 121-118 win over the Mavericks.

Goran Dragic puts alley-oop pass through rim (video)

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Goran Dragic is very good at alley-oops.

Too good.

With a “shot” like that falling, the Heat trounced the Knicks, 105-88.

Hawks’ Tim Hardaway Jr. kneed in the groin while defending 76ers (video)

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Since trading for him, the Hawks have gotten Tim Hardaway Jr. to buy in defensively.

After this help defense on 76ers center Richaun Holmes cost him dearly, I wouldn’t blame Hardaway if he gave up on the endeavor entirely.