JEFF MILLER, Associated Press
DALLAS (AP) — Amare Stoudemire showed he can help Dallas in his Mavericks debut.READ MORE: Recession Concerns Loom, Financial Experts Say Don't Make Emotional Decisions
The 32-year-old Stoudemire scored 14 points in 11 minutes backing up Tyson Chandler at center, helping spark the Mavericks to a 92-81 victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Sunday night.
The six-time All-Star was greeted with a standing ovation when he entered late in the second quarter. He signed with Dallas during the All-Star break after his contract was bought out by the New York Knicks.
“We’ve got all the right personnel, a great coaching staff,” said Stoudemire, who averaged 12 points and 24 minutes per game this season with the Knicks. “Tonight, I kept it simple and played my game.”
All five of Stoudemire’s made field-goal attempts came within a few feet of the basket, including a baseline dunk and an alley-oop finish.
Monta Ellis led Dallas with 23 points. Fifteen came during the final 7 minutes, his six field goals pacing a 15-2 Mavericks spurt after the Hornets pulled to 75-68.
“He’s our closer,” Dirk Nowitzki said about Ellis. “We definitely needed something.”
Mo Williams led Charlotte in scoring for the second time in two games since being acquired from Minnesota on Feb. 10. He scored 22 points on Sunday after getting 28 against Oklahoma City on Saturday.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marvin Williams added 15 each for Charlotte.
Dallas’ Richard Jefferson scored 10 points starting in place of Chandler Parsons. Parsons sustained a sprain and bone bruise to his left ankle Friday night and will miss at least three games.
Jefferson hit three 3-pointers, but drew the biggest crowd reaction of the night with an energetic dunk over Kidd-Gilchrist that was ruled an offensive foul.
“In 14 years, even when I could jump like that every day, I don’t think I’ve ever had a ref call an offensive foul like that,” the 34-year-old Jefferson said.
Stoudemire said of Jefferson: “I dunked on him like that years ago.”READ MORE: Beech Leaf Disease Found On Trees In St. Clair County
The Hornets have lost five straight and fell into ninth place in the Eastern Conference.
“Tonight, we lacked — it was a readiness to start the game,” Hornets coach Steve Clifford said. “We have to play with a discipline, a defensive disposition and rebounding disposition that right now is coming and going.”
Hornets: Al Jefferson grabbed a season-high 17 rebounds, but scored only eight points on 4-for-16 shooting. … Charlotte has cracked 50-percent shooting an NBA-low two times season and shot 36.7 percent on Sunday.
Mavericks: Parsons’ earliest return would be Saturday at home against Brooklyn. … For the first time this season, Nowitzki had more rebounds (12) than points (8). He didn’t attempt a 3-pointer for the first time since late December. … Dallas signed Bernard James to a second 10-day contract Saturday.
CLOSE CALL FOR MO
Mo Williams lives in Dallas and nearly signed with the Mavericks as a free agent last summer before agreeing with Minnesota. “It was close,” he said. “Everybody wants to play at home. But a lot of times, it doesn’t happen.”
Chandler was 6 for 6 from the floor for 12 points. He was 7 for 7 when the Mavericks won in Charlotte in mid-November.
Charlotte will play the second of four consecutive road games at Chicago on Wednesday night.
Dallas will play the second of three games in four days at home on Tuesday night against Toronto.MORE NEWS: Police Search For Suspect, 2 Persons Of Interest After 19-Year-Old Fatally Shot In Downtown Detroit
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