National Basketball Association
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                      === Parker, Spurs cut down Nets ===
 San  Antonio, TX (Sports  Network) - Tony Parker had 20 points and six assists
 to  head  a balanced  San Antonio  scoring attack as  the Spurs recorded their
 sixth  straight  victory with a  104-73 rout of the  Brooklyn Nets at the AT&T
 Parker  made  good on  9-of-13 field  goal attempts,  while five other players
 finished  in double  figures  to  help the  Spurs  achieve  a season-high  for
 consecutive  triumphs. Tim Duncan scored 15 points, Nando De Colo added 11 and
 Kawhi  Leonard,  Tiago Splitter and  Matt Bonner all had  10 for a San Antonio
 squad that shot a robust 58.9 percent as a team.
 The  Nets had  come into  the contest  off home  victories over  Charlotte and
 Cleveland  in  their first two  outings since  the team replaced Avery Johnson
 with  P.J. Carlesimo as  head coach, but were buried by a dismal third quarter
 in  which Brooklyn made a mere 2-of-20 shots from the floor and were outscored
 by a whopping 30-5 margin.
 "We  played  great defense  in the third  quarter. We tried  to make an effort
 defensively  and Coach [Gregg] Popovich has been talking a lot about that, and
 it  has  been a huge improvement  for us the  last two games. Defense has been
 great and we are on the right track."
 MarShon  Brooks finished  with 16 points and  Joe Johnson had 12 for the Nets,
 who also committed 18 turnovers that were converted into 28 Spurs' points.
 Despite  allowing  the Spurs to  hit on nearly 65  percent of their field goal
 tries,  Brooklyn managed to stay within striking distance in trailing 55-47 at
 the half. It all unraveled for the Nets in the third quarter, however.
 Deron  Williams buried a jumper with 7:52 left in the period following a quick
 8-0  San Antonio run, but Brooklyn would be held without a basket for the next
 six-plus  minutes as the Spurs ripped off 13 straight points to break the game
 wide open.
 Parker  and  Leonard each put  up five points  during the pivotal surge, which
 Duncan  capped with a  layup and free throw that gave San Antonio a commanding
 76-49 advantage heading into the final three minutes of the frame.
 "I  thought  Tony set  the tone  for us," said  Popovich. "I  thought he was a
 monster  tonight.  Offensively aggressive; defensively, really focused, really
 committed. I thought he was fantastic and everybody followed suit."
 Williams finally ended Brooklyn's drought with a steal and 3-point play at the
 1:38  mark, but the Spurs countered with a 9-0 burst that began with a De Colo
 basket from beyond the arc to take an 85-52 lead into the fourth quarter.
 Both  teams rested their regulars for the entire final 12 minutes, with Brooks
 amassing  13 of his  point total on 6-of-7 shooting but Brooklyn never got the
 differential below 28.
 San  Antonio gained the  early upper hand with a 12-4 flurry late in the first
 quarter  that turned  a three-point edge into  a 31-20 lead, and had a double-
 digit  cushion  for much  of the  second until  Johnson led  an 11-3 tear that
 brought  the  Nets to within 38-35  with just under seven minutes remaining in
 the half.
 The  game  continued to  be tight  nearing the  break, but  a Duncan layup and
 Parker  3-pointer gave  the Spurs some breathing room as San Antonio went into
 the locker room up 55-47.
                                   Game Notes
 The  Spurs have  now outscored the opposition  by an average of 24 points over
 their  last  five victories ...  The five points allowed  by San Antonio set a
 franchise  record for  fewest surrendered in a third quarter ... The Nets have
 now  lost in 10  straight trips to San Antonio and have dropped 18 of the last
 19  meetings between  the teams ... Brooklyn forward Gerald Wallace missed the
 matchup  with a knee injury, but teammate Kris Humphries returned from a five-
 game  absence  due to  an abdominal  strain and registered  seven points in 22
 minutes  ... Carlesimo  was an assistant under Popovich from 2002-07.
 12/31 23:04:20 ET

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