For the first time in the Seattle SuperSonics' five seasons at the Key Arena, they didn't sell out their home opener.
After missing the playoffs for the first time in nine years last season, the Sonics drew 16,140 fans into their 17,072-seat home.
"We obviously still are feeling the effects of last season," said John Dresel, president of Full House Sports and Entertainment, the business and marketing arm of the Sonics. "We must work hard to show the city that great basketball is back."
Cedric Ceballos scored 34 points for the Mavericks, who lost to the Sonics in overtime in their home opener last season, which didn't happen until February because of the owners' lockout.
Payton, who was scoreless at halftime, added 10 points and 13 assists. Baker added 13 rebounds.
"It seems like a good team to me," said Payton, who averaged 21.7 points to lead the Sonics in scoring last season. "I'm happy with it. If Vernon keeps scoring like he has, I can fade into the background."
Maxwell averaged 10.7 points and 22 minutes in Sacramento last season, helping the Kings get into the playoffs. He signed with Seattle as a free agent.
"I like the team and I like my teammates," said Maxwell, who has averaged 25.5 points and 29 minutes in Seattle's 2-0 start. "I'll do whatever they need for me to help this team."
Grant, 34, played 36 minutes, and Maxwell, also 34, logged 30 minutes.
"We're just trying to get some respect along with some wins," said Ceballos, who had a 14-for-23 shooting night. "We can play better, much better."
Said Dallas coach Don Nelson: "We buried ourselves in the second and third quarters. If we have a bad game by any one guy playing minutes, it's going to be difficult."
Seattle took a seven-point lead into the fourth quarter and Maxwell promptly sank a 3-pointer. Dallas cut its deficit to 84-79 before Rashard Lewis sank two free throws, McCoy hit a five-footer, Lewis scored on a fastbreak layup and McCoy had a dunk to put the Sonics in front 92-79.
In the third quarter, the Sonics held a 73-58 lead after Baker's dunk with 4:55 left, but the Mavericks cut their deficit to 77-72 on Ceballos' 3-pointer with 1:26 to go.
Maxwell had 15 points in the second quarter, when the Sonics scored the final eight to take a 56-46 halftime lead. Maxwell, who scored 29 points in Seattle's opener against the Los Angeles Clippers, hit four free throws in the final 1:29.
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