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Spurs Avenge Christmas Loss; Blast Rockets

For the first time in his hall of fame career, Tim Duncan did not score in a game. His team though, did’nt need him.

Lamarcus Aldridge scored 24 points, Kawhi Leonard added 22, Boris Diaw had 20, and Danny Green had 18 on six three pointers and the San Antonio Spurs avenged their Christmas Day loss to the Houston Rockets by pulling away in the second half winning 121-103 on Saturday night to improve to 20-0 at home this season and win their 29th consecutive home game dating back to last season. Duncan did not score for the first time in his illustrious career, but that was overlooked on a night when Aldridge, Leonard, Diaw and David West combined for 76 points. “LaMarcus had a great game, D-West had a great game, Boris had an unbelievable game,” Spurs reserve Manu Ginobili said. “We had a lot of guys stepping up and playing great. That’s what we needed over there. We just couldn’t score, we couldn’t move the ball well (in a previous loss to Houston).”

After losing 88-84 to their I-10 rivals on Christmas Day, the Spurs looked to avenge that loss, but came out flat as the Rockets high powered offense went on a 12-0 to take an early 12-3 lead. But the Spurs turned to Danny Green, who struggled in the first 34 games this shooting the ball, and had a simple New Year’s Resolution: shoot the ball better. It apparently worked Saturday as he hit 4 three pointers in the first quarter as the Spurs rallied back to take a 29-27 lead after the first quarter. Kawhi Leonard had two dunks in the second quarter that got the Spurs back in the game after trailing 48-43 and would take a 60-55 lead into halftime.

The Rockets managed to tie the game at 65 in the third quarter, then San Antonio erupted. Led by Leonard, Aldridge, and Diaw, the Spurs charged to a 31-7 run to end the third quarter and led 96-72 after 3. “They just ran their stuff better than us tonight,” Houston forward Corey Brewer said. “They were the Spurs like the way the Spurs always play. They run their stuff crisp and if you don’t guard them the right way, they’re going to get easy layups and easy shots.” It was a much different Spurs team then we saw on Christmas. Same with Houston as well. After holding the Spurs to only 84 points last week, the Rockets struggling defense collapsed on Saturday, allowing the most points that the Spurs have scored this season. The Rockets also have not won since their Christmas Day upset, losing their 4th straight game-San Antonio has’nt lost since. “It’s just tough, man,” Harden said. “We’re in a tough position right now.” Its the Spurs 4th win in 5 games against Houston after they lost 6 straight to the Rockets from March 2013 to November 2014.

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