Clippers
Spurs
90 - 99 Final
  for this game

Duncan leads Spurs past Clippers

Dec 23, 2007 - 5:48 AM By Brian Guerra PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

SAN ANTONIO (Ticker) - Tim Duncan had 34 points and season-high 18 rebounds, as the San Antonio Spurs survived a late rally for a 99-90 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday night at the AT&T Center.

San Antonio point guard Tony Parker, who missed four games with a sprained left ankle, returned to the starting lineup with 18 points and six assists.

Duncan converted 13-of-22 shots, made 8-of-9 free throws and added five assists.

"Timmy obviously had a great night," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "He was able to pull it through for us. He was great."

San Antonio played nearly the entire game without Manu Ginobili, who sprained his left index finger with 4:27 left in the first quarter after trying to poke at a loose ball.

San Antonio opened the first quarter on a 15-5 run, and most of the game was a blowout. The Spurs never trailed and led by as many as 24 late in the first half. The only thing seemingly keeping Spurs fans in their seats was Avery Johnson's jersey retirement after the game.

But Los Angeles outscored the Spurs, 24-17, in the third quarter, and Cuttino Mobley's 3-pointer cut the lead to 77-65 early in the fourth. Parker, however, answered with four straight points.

Dan Dickau hit a layup that cut the Spurs' lead to 92-86 with just under two minutes left in the game. But Duncan drew a foul on Chris Kaman after driving for a successful layup. Duncan made the free throw for a 95-86 lead, and San Antonio kept the Clippers at bay the rest of the game.

"We didn't play very well in the second half," Parker said. "The Clippers played better, played more physical and got some stops. But we had a pretty big lead so it's sometimes hard to stay focused. We got the win, though, and that's the main thing."

Clippers rookie Al Thornton led the team with 25 points. Kaman contributed 20 points and a team-high 10 rebounds and Mobley added 16 points.

"In a game like tonight, all you can do is keep fighting and hope to come out with a win," Kaman said. "The Spurs are a great team with many weapons."

The Spurs were already comfortably ahead when Ime Udoka's 3-pointer capped a 12-2 run that gave the Spurs a 54-32 lead with 2:24 left in the second quarter. Udoka, who had 13 points and seven rebounds in the first half, finished with a season-high 17 points.

Much of the Spurs advantage came from the paint. The Spurs had 22 more points than the Clippers in the lane, and outrebounded them 52-33.








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