Nowitzki in 5th all-time scoring spot

NEW YORK • Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki passed Shaquille O'Neal for sixth place on the National Basketball Association all-time scoring list on Wednesday, scoring 22 points to help defeat hosts Brooklyn Nets 119-118 in overtime.

The 37-year-old German sank a jumper over Andrea Bargnani 2:09 into the second quarter to push past the 10 points he needed to overtake O'Neal, who finished with 28,596 points.

"He's probably the most dominant big man to ever play this game so it's kind of surreal that I'm up there among these all-time greats," Nowitzki said.

"For a kid leaving Germany over 18 years ago who didn't know what to expect, it has been an amazing ride."

Nowitzki, who passed Moses Malone for seventh spot last year at Brooklyn, could aim for Wilt Chamberlain's fifth-place total of 31,419 points if he returns to the NBA next season.

JJ Barea scored 32 points and had a game-high 11 assists to lead Dallas (16-13) while Thaddeus Young paced the Nets (8-21) with 29 and 10 rebounds.

At Cleveland, LeBron James scored 24 points, grabbed nine rebounds and added five assists while Kevin Love had 23 points and 13 rebounds to power the Cavaliers (19-7) over the visiting New York Knicks (14-16).

The Cavs blew an 11-point lead but ended the game with an 11-2 run for the 91-84 victory.

James scored nine points in the fourth quarter.

He is averaging an NBA-best 8.7 points in the fourth quarter this season with Stephen Curry and Anthony Davis second at 7.7 a game in the last 12 minutes of regulation time.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 25, 2015, with the headline 'Nowitzki in 5th all-time scoring spot'. Print Edition | Subscribe