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Duncan, Spurs top Sonics, remain unbeaten on the road

Nov 27, 2006 - 4:32 AM SEATTLE (Ticker) -- Tim Duncan did everything but carry the bags as the San Antonio Spurs continued their road success.

Duncan collected 18 points, 16 rebounds and six assists and Tony Parker added eight of his 20 points in a decisive fourth-quarter run as the Spurs remained unbeaten on the road with a 98-78 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics.

Fabricio Oberto scored 16 points for the Spurs, who shot 53 percent (41-of-78) from the field and outrebounded the SuperSonics, 48-34. He combined with Duncan to dominate Seattle's front line.

"You know Fabricio is a very experienced guy," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. "He is an Olympic champion and he's done all that stuff, so he's not just a young pup. He knows how to play the position and Timmy is really enjoying playing with him."

"It wasn't only our defense, we just stopped turning the ball over and stopped giving up second opportunities," Duncan said. "They were killing us on our turnovers, but our offensive rebounds did a good job of shutting that down. When that happens, I thought we just did a really good job pushing it back on them."

A two-time MVP, Duncan excelled in every facet of the game, shooting 7-of-11 from the floor, grabbing seven offensive rebounds and setting up teammates out of collapsing double-teams.

Parker benefited from his teammate's unselfish play, shooting 10-of-18 and converting numerous easy baskets.

"I was just trying to be aggressive. The first three quarters, I didn't get a lot of shots," Parker said. "I was just trying to make something happen in the fourth quarter. We played pretty good defense, made some stops. We had a big lead and they came back in the fourth quarter, they cut it to three, so (we) just (tried) make stop after stop and be aggressive on offense."

Trailing by 10 points at halftime, Seattle battled in the second half, cutting the deficit to 76-73 on Ray Allen's jumper with 7:50 remaining in the game. But San Antonio answered with an 11-0 spurt capped by Parker's jumper that made it 87-73 with 4:59 left.

"(The Sonics) just kept coming back at us and I thought that was pretty impressive on their part," Popovich said. "We were fortunate that Tony Parker got on a roll and scored eight or 10 in a row and that got us over the hump."

The Spurs, who were 29-12 away from home last season, picked up their team-record seventh straight road victory and have won 11 consecutive regular-season games away from the AT&T Center dating to last season.

"Part of it is just statistical happenstance. I don't think we're going to be undefeated on the road for the year," Popovich said. "I guarantee we're going to lose some games. We just happen to play well on the road in the beginning (of the season).

"I don't really attribute it to much more than that except the fact that we do have an experienced team and they know what it's like to play on the road, they enjoy winning on the road and those are the sweetest wins."

Allen scored 21 points and Nick Collison collected 15 points and seven rebounds for the Sonics, who shot just 38 percent (33-of-86), including 1-of-10 from the arc.

Despite his team's offensive futility, Allen thought Seattle lacked intensity on the other end of the court.

"Defensively, we didn't have a presence. We got it close and then they got into our paint and made some shots, passed the ball well," Allen said. "It showed this team what a championship caliber team looks like and how they perform.

"They play four quarters of basketball and they don't panic. They take care of the ball and make plays for each other, so that's something that we have to get to."






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