Basketball - Spurs back on top in play-offs against Mavericks

San Antonio center Tiago Splitter produced nine points of his 17 points in the fourth quarter to help the Spurs defeat the Dallas Mavericks and regain control of their Western Conference first-round play-off series.

Basketball - Spurs back on top in play-offs against Mavericks

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San Antonio Spurs forward Tiago Splitter passes around Dallas Mavericks center Samuel Dalembert (Reuters)

Spurs 109, Mavericks 103

The Spurs now lead the best-of-seven matchup 3-2 and can close out the series in Dallas on Friday Top-seeded San Antonio has won the last two games of the series after trailing 2-1.

Splitter added 12 rebounds and five assists on Wednesday while Tony Parker led the Spurs with 23 points. He made a 3-point shot with 1:52 left in the game and assisted on a basket by forward Tim Duncan with 47 seconds remaining that helped San Antonio seal the win.

San Antonio took a nine-point lead at halftime and effectively held off every Dallas run.

Reserve guard Vince Carter was spectacular for Dallas, scoring a game-high 28 points and converting seven of nine 3-point attempts.

Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki scored 14 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter, and he grabbed 15 rebounds in the game. He reached the 20-point mark for the first time in the series.

Dallas guard Monta Ellis scored 21. 

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Rockets 108, Trail Blazers 98

James Harden awoke from a game-long slumber and scored eight points over the last four minutes to lead the Houston Rockets to a 108-98 win over the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Five of their Western Conference series.

Harden finished with 17 points and seven assists to help Houston avoid elimination as they cut their series deficit to 3-2. Game Six is on Friday in Portland.

After three of the first four games of this tight series went to overtime, Houston pulled away for the largest win of the seven-game matchup.

Jeremy Lin scored 21 points off the bench while Dwight Howard (22 points, 14 rebounds) and Omer Asik (10 points, 15 rebounds) recorded double-doubles for the Rockets.

Portland forward LaMarcus Aldridge scored just eight points on three-for-12 shooting after totaling 89 points over Games One and Two.

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Raptors 115, Nets 113

Kyle Lowry scored 36 points and the Toronto Raptors held on to defeat the Brooklyn Nets and take a 3-2 lead in their first-round Eastern Conference play-off series.

The Raptors led by as many as 26 points in the third quarter, but the Nets battled all the way back before being called for a backcourt violation on their final possession.

The Raptors can clinch the best-of-seven series with a win at Brooklyn on Friday. They are looking to advance to the second round of the play-offs for just the second time in franchise history, and first time since 2001.

Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan added 23 points.

Nets forward Joe Johnson scored 18 of his 30 points in the third quarter.

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