DALLAS -- Gary Harris scored 20 points and the Denver Nuggets beat Dallas 109-91 on Tuesday night with the Mavericks honoring retiring Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo as a ceremonial player.
With nothing at stake in a lost season that will be the worst for Dallas (32-49) since going 20-62 in 1997-98, the Mavericks followed through with an idea hatched in part by star Dirk Nowitzki weeks ago when it was clear Romo wasn't returning to the Cowboys.
Romo was honored exactly a week after announcing he was leaving football to become the No. 1 NFL analyst at CBS.
The soon-to-be-37-year-old had the crowd on its feet in the final minute hoping he could play, but Romo wasn't on the roster or under contract.
Mason Plumlee and Malik Beasley scored 16 apiece in the first game for the Nuggets (39-42) since getting eliminated from the postseason. Nowitzki scored 21 for Dallas.
Hawks wrap up No. 5 seed with win over Hornets
ATLANTA -- Dwight Howard had 19 points and 12 rebounds as the resurgent Atlanta Hawks won their fourth straight game, routing the listless Charlotte Hornets 103-76 on Tuesday night to wrap up the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Hawks will face the Washington Wizards in the opening round of the playoffs.
A week ago, Atlanta's playoff hopes were in jeopardy after a dismal stretch that included two losses to Brooklyn, the worst team in the NBA.
Then, in a sudden turnaround that epitomized the team's maddening inconsistency this season, the Hawks knocked off East-leading Boston and recorded two straight stunning victories over the defending NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers, including Sunday's comeback from a 26-point deficit.
This one was never in doubt. Charlotte played its regular-season finale already eliminated from the playoffs and without its best player, Kemba Walker (see full recap).
Oladipo's late shot lifts Westbrook-less Thunder over Timberwolves
MINNEAPOLIS -- Victor Oladipo scored 20 points and hit a jumper with 6.3 seconds to play to lift the Russell Westbrook-less Oklahoma City Thunder to a 100-98 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night.
With Westbrook resting for the first time this season, Oladipo also had nine rebounds and six assists, and the Thunder outrebounded Minnesota 54-35. Starters Taj Gibson and Andre Roberson also sat out as the Thunder prepare for a first-round series against Houston. Domantas Sabonis added 19 points and nine rebounds.
Karl-Anthony Towns had 26 points and 12 rebounds, while Andrew Wiggins overcame a 1-for-11 start to finish with 18 points for the Minnesota. But the Timberwolves again struggled to get stops down the stretch and Wiggins missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer as they lost their fifth straight game (see full recap).