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Friday, March 30, 2012
Super-sub Ginobili keys streaking Spurs in victory over Kings
SACRAMENTO, California — Manu Ginobili talked about wanting to find his rhythm after helping the San Antonio Spurs win yet another road game.
However, Ginobili certainly resembled the slashing, high scorer that he has been throughout his nine seasons with San Antonio. Coming off the bench, he scored 20 points in 25 minutes and the Spurs beat the Sacramento Kings 117-112 on Wednesday night for their sixth straight victory.
Ginobili hit some key baskets in the fourth quarter when a deep, talented San Antonio squad pulled away for its ninth victory in 10 games.
Ginobili has been playing well of late, but said he's still trying to fine-tune his game during a season where several injuries forced him to miss 29 games.
"I'm still trying to get in a rhythm," said Ginobili, who hit three 3-pointers and was 8 of 12 overall. "I'm getting there, it's been much better the past 10 days. I'm not at my best, but I'm letting it come to me. I'm trying to be more of a creator than a finisher."
Spurs center Tim Duncan said the team is the deepest in his 14 seasons with the team. That was evident against the Kings, whose backups were outscored 55-20 by the San Antonio reserves. Rookie Kawhi Leonard was the only Spurs player to go over 30 minutes, which was important because coach Gregg Popovich's team was playing its fifth game in six nights. And it won all five games.
Leonard had 19 points, Duncan added 18 points and eight rebounds, Gary Neal scored 13 points, and Tony Parker had 10 points, 10 assists and seven boards.
The Spurs shot 54 percent overall, but were especially effective in the final two quarters when they shot 66 percent and scored 64 points.
"They play like a championship team. They play together and they look like they love playing together," said Kings rookie point guard Isaiah Thomas, who had a career-high 28 points and 10 assists.
Knicks 108, Magic 86
In New York, Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks climbed above .500 for the first time since mid-January in overwhelming fashion, scoring 21 straight points in the third quarter and routing Orlando.
Anthony and Iman Shumpert each scored 25 points for New York (26-25), which has won for the eighth time in nine games despite playing without the injured Amare Stoudemire and Jeremy Lin.
The Knicks outscored Orlando 65-30 in the middle two quarters.
Bulls 98, Hawks 77
In Atlanta, Luol Deng scored 22 points and led a flurry of 3-pointers to help NBA-leading Chicago blow out the Hawks for another road victory.
Celtics 94, Jazz 82
In Boston, Kevin Garnett scored 23 points and added 10 rebounds, and Rajon Rondo had 14 assists.
Timberwolves 88, Bobcats 83
In Charlotte, Kevin Love had 40 points and 19 rebounds to lead Minnesota.
Clippers 103, Suns 86
In Los Angeles, Blake Griffin threw down three dunks in a 1:40 span late in the fourth quarter and had 27 points and 14 rebounds.
Nets 100, Pacers 84
In Newark, New Jersey, Deron Williams had 30 points and nine assists in a win over Indiana.
Pistons 87, Cavaliers 75
In Cleveland, Tayshaun Prince matched a season high with 29 points and rookie Brandon Knight added 16 for Detroit.
Hornets 102, Warriors 87
In Oakland, New Orleans' Marco Belinelli had 22 points and six assists and Jarrett Jack added 20 points and nine assists.
Raptors 105, Nuggets 96
In Toronto, Andrea Bargnani scored 26 points and Jose Calderon had 10 points and 10 assists.