Don’t expect that gusty wind that’s been whipping around Dallas to die down.

The huge, collective exhale let loose by the Mavericks on Saturday night is bound to produce enough breeze to keep mussing hair for a few days.

Dirk Nowitzki, Monta Ellis and Co. are back in the NBA playoffs after the Mavericks missed out last season for the first time in a dozen years. Their 101-98 victory over the Phoenix Suns clinched a berth in the postseason.

Nowitzki was a beast in the second half, and Ellis simply did everything to power the Mavericks to their 49th victory of the season.

By virtue of having the tiebreaker clinched against both Phoenix and Memphis, the Mavericks can finish no lower than eighth in the Western Conference, ensuring them a return to the playoffs.

If they finish eighth, they will play San Antonio. If they finish seventh, it will be Oklahoma City.

“It feels good to be back in the big dance,” said Nowitzki, who scored 21 of his 23 points in the second half. “That’s where competitors want to be — on the big stage in the playoffs.”

Ellis had 37 points, including three 3-pointers in the third quarter when the Mavericks erased a 13-point deficit.

Nowitzki played the final minutes through a twisted left ankle, which he said hurt briefly, but he doesn’t expect it to hinder him moving forward.

The return to the playoffs is gratifying for all the Mavericks, but particularly Ellis and the veteran trio of Nowitzki, Shawn Marion and Vince Carter.

“We feel official now,” Carter said. “We’re back where we feel we should be. This is a tough bunch. We walked in the day before training camp and looked at all the talent and said: ‘It can happen.’ We knew it was going to be a bumpy road, but there’s so much talent in this locker room.”