May 22, 2018
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Spurs show balance in victory over Celtics

Soobum Im | USA Today Sports
Soobum Im | USA Today Sports
Boston Celtics guard Jordan Crawford (27) drives to the basket under pressure from San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan (21) during the first half Wednesday night in San Antonio.
By SportsDirect, Special to the BDN

SAN ANTONIO — Tony Parker scored 19 points to lead six San Antonio Spurs in double figures as San Antonio pulled away from the Boston Celtics to run its winning streak to eight games with a 104-93 NBA victory Wednesday night.

Kawhi Leonard collected 16 points and eight rebounds and Tiago Splitter added 11 points and 10 boards for the Spurs (10-1), who matched the best 11-game start in franchise history. Tim Duncan contributed 13 points and nine rebounds and Boris Diaw scored 12 off the bench for San Antonio.

Jared Sullinger racked up 19 points and 17 rebounds and Avery Bradley and Jeff Green also scored 19 for the Celtics, who have lost five straight following a four-game winning streak. Jordan Crawford chipped in 12, but Boston got just 16 points from its bench compared to 34 from the Spurs’ reserves.

Neither team led by more than four in the first quarter and they traded spurts early in the second en route to a 48-48 halftime deadlock. Leonard scored 10 points during a 13-2 run early in the third to propel the Spurs to a nine-point advantage, and San Antonio finally achieved a double-digit cushion on Parker’s layup with 3:55 left in the quarter.

The Spurs took an 80-70 lead into the final stanza, and Danny Green hit three 3-pointers in the first five minutes of the fourth as they extended the margin to 97-78. The Celtics made one last push but couldn’t get closer than nine.

GAME NOTEBOOK: The Spurs held a 48-36 edge in the paint and have outscored their opponents in the lane in nine of 11 games. … San Antonio was 8-of-21 from 3-point rage, meaning Boston has allowed 33 made 3-pointers in its past four games compared to 42 in its first nine contests. … Celtics PF Gerald Wallace was fined $10,000 for using profanity during postgame media availability following Tuesday’s loss at Houston.

Clippers 102, ’Wolves 98

Chris Paul scored 16 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter and added 11 assists as visiting Los Angeles held off Minnesota.

Paul scored 13 straight points for the Clippers in the final 3:41 before J.J. Redick, who finished with 15 points, capped it with three free throws. Blake Griffin added 20 points and 10 rebounds and Jamal Crawford added 16 points off the bench for Los Angeles.

Kevin Martin had 28 points and 10 rebounds but the Timberwolves fell to the Clippers for the seventh straight meeting. Nikola Pekovic added 20 points and Corey Brewer had 17 while Kevin Love struggled to 10 points on 2-of-14 shooting to go along with 12 rebounds and eight assists for Minnesota.

The Timberwolves scored the final six points of the third to go into the final quarter down 71-67 but went the first three minutes of the fourth without a point as Los Angeles stretched its lead to 11. Minnesota chipped away and drew to within 86-85 on Martin’s 3-pointer with four minutes left before Paul completed a three-point play, drained a 3-pointer and knocked down a jumper on consecutive possessions to keep the Clippers clear.

Neither side managed to gain any separation in the first half, matching each other at 24 through the first quarter before heading into the break knotted at 46. Los Angeles started to pull clear with a 10-2 run in the third quarter, pushing it to 71-61 on Redick’s layup with 1:49 left in the period.

Pacers 103, Knicks 96

Paul George scored nine of his 35 points in overtime as visiting Indiana sent New York to its sixth straight home loss.

George rebounded from a season-low 12-point outing in the Pacers’ only loss of the season Saturday in Chicago to carry his team down the stretch, hitting three free throws to force the extra session and then dominating in overtime. George Hill added 23 points and David West contributed 10 points to go with 10 rebounds.

Carmelo Anthony led the struggling Knicks with 30 points on 10-of-28 shooting, missing a potential game-winner in the lane at the end of regulation. JR Smith scored 21 points off the bench and Beno Udrih finished with 19.

Anthony made two foul shots with 9.2 seconds left in the fourth quarter to give his team an 89-86 lead but George hit three from the line after he was was fouled by Iman Shumpert beyond the arc with 5.2 ticks remaining. George buried a 3-pointer to start overtime, answered an Anthony hook shot with a pull-up jumper and two free throws to make it 96-91 and added one more basket with 67 seconds to go to put Indiana up 99-93.

The Knicks scored the game’s first 13 points as Indiana started 0-for-7 from the floor before getting to within 19-14 at the end of one when Roy Hibbert banked in a buzzer-beating 3-pointer. New York’s lead remained five points entering the third and was at four points going into the fourth before the Pacers took a 65-64 lead on Chris Copeland’s 3-pointer with 10:25 left, setting up a see-saw finish.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Hibbert’s 3-pointer was the fifth of his career and just the second since the 2009-10 season. … Anthony had a season-high 18 rebounds. … The teams combined to make 17-of-60 3-pointers.


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