Final

Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 11/19

Game 1: Friday, November 19th
Spurs92Final
Celtics84
Game 2: Sunday, December 26th
Celtics90Final
Spurs107

Celtics 90

(12-14, 5-9 away)

Spurs 107

(22-6, 13-1 home)

Coverage: FSSW

6:00 PM ET, December 26, 2004

AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

1 2 3 4 T
BOS 18 25 23 2490
SA 25 25 31 26107

Top Performers

Bos: R. Davis 21 Pts, 5 Reb, 5 Ast, 1 Stl

SA: T. Parker 27 Pts, 5 Reb, 6 Ast, 3 Stl

Spurs win 15th in a row against Celtics

SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- Tony Parker seems to have found his offensive spark.

The San Antonio point guard, who struggled with his shot early in the season, scored a season-high 27 points on Sunday night to lead the Spurs to a 107-90 victory over the Boston Celtics.

Parker went 11-for-17 from the floor, and is shooting 55 percent over the past 15 games. In the Spurs' first 13 games, he managed only 39 percent.

"I was rushing, you know, maybe forcing a lot of shots," said Parker, who signed a $66 million contract extension in late October. "Now I'm just taking my time and letting it come. The more I am feeling comfortable, the more I want to take shots."

San Antonio built up several decisive leads during the game, only to watch the tenacious Celtics scrap their way back into contention.

Down by 15 to start the final period, Boston's last charge pulled it within 92-84 on a 19-footer jumper by Ricky Davis with nearly five minutes left.

But Bruce Bowen's third 3-pointer of the game and a driving layup by Parker started a 12-4 run to seal the win.

"We had a lot of assists tonight (27), so that means we are distributing the ball," Bowen said. "We understand that if you're shooting wide-open shots, it's a lot better."

Devin Brown added 17 points, including four 3-pointers, for San Antonio and Bowen finished with 15. Tim Duncan had 14 points and 11 rebounds to keep his perfect record against Boston intact. He hasn't lost to the Celtics since they missed out on drafting him in 1997.

Davis led Boston with 21 points on 8-for-11 shooting, and Paul Pierce scored 16.

The Celtics trailed 50-43 at halftime, but a 14-6 burst capped by Gary Payton's layup helped Boston take its only lead of the game at the 7:22 mark in the third.

The lead was short-lived, as Duncan hit a short bank shot over Mark Blount on San Antonio's next trip down the floor to start an 11-0 burst by the Spurs that included three layups and a driving finger roll by Parker.

"Our pick-and-roll defense is atrocious," said Celtics coach Doc Rivers. "We worked on it this morning (during shootaround), and it was almost like we didn't. Our defense is what has been letting us down."

The Celtics went without a basket for five minutes before Raef LaFrentz made his second 3-pointer and a dunk, but Brown hit a 31-footer at the third-quarter buzzer to extend the Spurs' lead to 81-66.

"We made a run, then we went flat again," said Payton, who finished with 10 points. "We can't stop a team that penetrates like they did, getting layup after layup."

San Antonio finished with 18 layups and outscored Boston 52-46 in the paint.

With the score tied at 11-all, the Spurs started their first spurt of the evening, reeling off 10 straight points, beginning with a corner 3-pointer by Bowen.

San Antonio extended its lead to 48-33 on a short bank shot by Duncan with 3:43 remaining in the half.

That would be the Spurs' last basket before the break, while Boston scored on four straight possessions -- including 3-pointers by Jiri Welsch and Davis -- to trim the difference to seven at halftime.< ^Notes:@The Celtics have dropped 14 straight in San Antonio. Their last road win against the Spurs came Feb. 14, 1990, when they overcame 32 points and 11 rebounds by then-rookie David Robinson. ... Davis is the NBA's leading scorer off the bench at 15.1 points per game. ... The Celtics, averaging 101.6 points coming into Sunday's game, are now 4-9 when scoring less than 100.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
BOS
SA
Points 90 107
FGM-FGA 36-75 (.480) 42-80 (.525)
3PM-3PA 6-14 (.429) 9-22 (.409)
FTM-FTA 12-19 (.632) 14-18 (.778)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 7-32 11-40
Assists 19 27
Turnovers 16 15
Steals 8 10
Blocks 6 4
Fast Break Points 14 14
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 16 (2/0) 18 (0/0)
Largest Lead 1 17

Top Performers

Boston
San Antonio
Ricky Davis Davis
Points: 21
Reb: 5
Ast: 5
Stl: 1
Blk: 0
Tony Parker Parker
Points: 27
Reb: 5
Ast: 6
Stl: 3
Blk: 0