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NBA Preview from The Sports Network

Tuesday, December 20th (All times eastern)

San Antonio Spurs (19-5) at Milwaukee Bucks (13-9), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The defending world champion San Antonio Spurs play the middle contest of a three-game road trip, as they visit the Milwaukee Bucks tonight at the Bradley Center.

San Antonio attempts to bounce back from a surprising loss. On Sunday, Speedy Claxton scored five of his 14 points during a crucial run in the fourth quarter, as the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets beat the Spurs, 89-76, at the Ford Center.

Michael Finley and Tony Parker each scored 17 points in the loss to the Hornets for San Antonio, but it was an off night for All-Star Tim Duncan, who finished with 11 points and eight rebounds on just 4-of-12 shooting from the floor.

On the injury front, San Antonio guard Manu Ginobili (foot) is doubtful for tonight's contest. He has missed four straight games with the injury. Ginobili is averaging 15.2 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.1 assists in 18 games this season.

The Spurs, who will close out the road trip on Wednesday against Stephon Marbury and the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden, are 8-4 as the visitor this season. They have dropped two of their last three contests on the road.

Milwaukee plays the second leg of a three-game homestand. On Saturday, rookie Deron Williams, Mehmet Okur and Gordan Giricek each scored 14 points, as the Utah Jazz defeated the Bucks, 88-80, at the Bradley Center.

Jamaal Magloire registered a double-double, scoring 14 points and grabbing 16 rebounds, and Michael Redd scored 19 on 6-of-13 shooting from the field in the loss to Utah for the Bucks, who have lost two of their last three games overall.

Milwaukee forward Bobby Simmons (shoulder) is questionable for tonight's contest. He has missed four straight contests with the injury. The NBA's Most Improved Player last season, Simmons is averaging 12.3 points and 5.3 boards in 16 contests.

The Bucks, who have dropped two straight and three of their last four at the Bradley Center, are 6-5 at home this season. They will host the Hornets on Friday in the finale of the stand.

This is the first of two meetings this season between the clubs. The Spurs are scheduled to host Milwaukee on January 18, 2006 at the SBC Center.

San Antonio has won two straight and five of the last six meetings in this series. The Spurs have won two of their last three at Milwaukee.

12/20 10:12:04 ET

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