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Warriors oust Mavericks; Jazz force Game 7

The Golden State Warriors defeated the visiting Dallas Mavericks, 111-86, to advance to the quarterfinals of the Western Conference playoffs last night.

The Golden State Warriors defeated the visiting Dallas Mavericks, 111-86, to advance to the quarterfinals of the Western Conference playoffs last night.

The Warriors, who won the best-of-seven series, 4-2, were led by Stephen Jackson's 33 points.

The Mavericks, the NBA's leading regular-season team with 67 victories, got 20 points each from Josh Howard and Jerry Stackhouse.

In the other Western Conference game, Carlos Boozer scored 22 points to help lead the host Utah Jazz to a 94-82 win over the Rockets and force Game 7 in Houston tomorrow night.

The Rockets were led by Tracy McGrady, who had 26 points and 10 rebounds.

The Jazz were also led by Mehmet Okur, who added 19 points, including four three-pointers. Deron Williams had 15 points and Andrei Kirilenko had his best game of the series with 14 points and five blocks.

The home team has won every game in the series, which bodes well for the Rockets, who haven't played well in Utah this season.

Kirilenko scored six points and blocked three shots in the fourth quarter. McGrady tried to drive on him once with the Rockets down three, but Kirilenko stayed on him and swatted the ball away during a 13-4 run that sealed it for the Jazz.

"We had a game we had to win or we were going home," Kirilenko said. "That's hard to play with this kind of intensity on both ends of the court, but we had to win."


* MGM Mirage Inc.'s chief executive said the NBA All-Star game potentially hurt its earnings and soured the company on a franchise coming to Las Vegas.

Terry Lanni made the comment after the company's first-quarter earnings fell below analyst forecasts.

The company said the earnings shortfall was partially due to the rowdy crowd that surrounded the NBA All-Star game in February, which fell on the same weekend as Chinese New Year, a crucial period for bringing in high-rollers from Asia.

"The gang-bangers and others who came for purposes other than attending the game, they weren't very good for Las Vegas," Lanni told the Associated Press.

* Sacramento Kings forward Ron Artest pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor domestic violence charge stemming from a March 5 dispute with his wife.

Placer County (Calif.) Superior Court Judge Francis Kearney sentenced Artest to 100 hours of community service and a 10-day work project through the county sheriff's department. Artest also was fined $600 and ordered to get extensive counseling.

Artest was accused of grabbing, pushing and slapping his wife during an argument and preventing her from calling 911 from his $1.85 million mansion in Loomis, 25 miles northeast of Sacramento. The couple's 3-year-old daughter was home at the time.

* Brian Hill's job as head coach of the Magic may be in jeopardy, according to a report in the Orlando Sentinel.

Team president Bob Vander Weide told the newspaper he would take some time in making his decision. The Magic was swept by Detroit in the first round of the playoffs.

"People ask me if Brian Hill will be back as our coach. All I can say is that I have no answer for that right now," Vander Weide said.

* Golden State's Jason Richardson was fined $35,000 by the NBA for improper interaction with a fan during a playoff game in Dallas. Richardson had a heated verbal exchange with the fan after missing a shot and falling out of bounds with 21.9 seconds left in the Warriors' 118-112 loss in Game 5 of the first-round series.

* Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng won the NBA's sportsmanship award, edging Shane Battier and four other divisional winners in a vote by players.

Deng received 52 first-place votes and 2,027 points - 22 more than Battier of Houston. Utah's Derek Fisher (1,953) was third, followed by the Los Angeles Clippers' Elton Brand (1,935), Atlanta's Joe Johnson (1,737) and Toronto's Anthony Parker (1,611).

The award honors the player who best exemplifies ethical behavior, fair play and integrity on the court. *