=== Spurs use balanced attack to stomp Raptors ===
San Antonio, TX (Sports Network) - Tim Duncan scored a game-high 15 points to
go along with six rebounds as the San Antonio Spurs cooled down the Toronto
Raptors with a 100-80 decision at AT&T Center.
Manu Ginobili followed with 14 points, while Tony Parker added 13 and seven
assists for San Antonio, which won its third straight game.
Alan Anderson and Amir Johnson each netted 12 points to pace the Raptors, who
had their season-high five-game win streak snapped.
Terrence Ross and John Lucas III scored 11 points apiece off the bench in a
"That is probably the best team in the NBA right now. They're playing well
together," Raptors coach Dwane Casey said about the Spurs. "The few days of
good practice they had and we took days off showed."
San Antonio connected on four of its first six shots from the floor while the
Raptors went just 1-for-6 from the field to give the Spurs an early 9-3 lead.
Toronto netted the next five points to close its gap to one, but the Raptors
would get no closer until Johnson later capped a 6-0 push with a layup to knot
the game at 16-16 with a little over two minutes left in the first quarter.
The Spurs, however, scored six of the final eight points of the frame and
carried a 22-18 lead into the second quarter.
Toronto followed Stephen Jackson's opening basket of the second with an 11-3
spurt to take its first lead of the game at 29-27.
The lead would exchange hands three times from there as the teams traded
blows, with the last coming on a pair of Danny Green free throws as part of a
14-4 run by the Spurs over the final three-plus minutes of the half to give
them a 44-37 advantage at the break.
After Duncan drained a jumper to start the scoring in the third quarter, the
Raptors battled back with an 11-5 push to get within 51-48.
San Antonio responded with six straight points to regain a nine-point edge and
following a brief 5-0 spurt by Toronto that brought the Raptors back within
57-53, the Spurs closed out the third with a 13-4 run to take a 70-57 lead
into the fourth quarter.
Toronto never threatened in the final stanza, trailing by double digits
throughout the entire fourth quarter.
"I thought our defense was very good in the second half," Spurs coach Gregg
Popovich said. "They did a much better job in the pick-and-roll and our pace
was better offensively. We got back into our usual flow and it worked out
Spurs guard Gary Neal sat out the game with a strained right calf ... The
Raptors have not won six in a row since March 22-April 4, 2009 ... Toronto
allowed an opponent to surpass 100 points for the first time in eight games
and fell to 0-14 this season when allowing an opponent to do so ... San
Antonio leads the all-time series between the teams, 23-9 ... The Spurs have
now won seven straight at home and improved to 11-2 at AT&T Center this season
... The Raptors fell to 2-15 on the road.
12/27 03:08:45 ET