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NBA game of the week: San Antonio at Dallas

The Spurs are unlikely to be caught in the West, but the outcome of Friday's game could loom large for the Mavericks and the Lakers in the race to finish second in the conference.

March 12, 2011|By Mark Heisler
  • Perennial All-Stars Tim Duncan of the Spurs and Dirk Nowitzki of the Mavericks will square off again this week in a battle for Western Conference playoff seeding.
Perennial All-Stars Tim Duncan of the Spurs and Dirk Nowitzki of the Mavericks… (Eric Gay / Associated Press )

SAN ANTONIO AT DALLAS:

Friday at 5:30 p.m. TV: NBA TV

This is more important for the Mavericks and Lakers, fighting for No. 2 in the West, than the Spurs, who aren't likely to be caught by anyone in the West, or East.

The Lakers-Mavericks loser in the West race is the one looking at playing the other two back-to-back without home-court advantage in the playoffs.

With Saturday night's victory in Dallas, the Lakers are a half-game back with the season series 1-1 and their schedules going in different directions.

Even with Saturday night's win giving the Mavericks the season series and a 2½-game lead, their schedules are going in different directions.

Coming off the road, the Lakers will be at home for their next seven, the last March 31 against the Mavericks.

Heading out, the Mavericks will play eight of their next 11 on the road, including the Lakers game and two at Portland.

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