OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Gregg Popovich had an easy time sizing up
San Antonio's latest victory as his team's best performance yet.
No one could argue with the coach after the Spurs scored a
season-best 36 points in the first quarter, led by 30 points at the
break and almost doubled Golden State on the boards.
Tim Duncan had his NBA-leading 10th double-double by halftime on
the way to 19 points and 12 rebounds in the Spurs' fifth straight
victory, 113-89 over the Warriors on Wednesday night.
"A good all-around game," Popovich said. "At both ends of the
court, I thought we probably played our finest game of the season
so far. It was a bad combination for Golden State because I think
they just had a bad night."
Tony Parker added 26 points, six assists and five rebounds and
Manu Ginobili had 14 points and five assists for the Spurs, who won
for the eighth time in nine games with an impressive shooting
performance. They made 17 of their first 23 shots to quickly turn
this one into a rout, beating the Warriors for the fourth straight
Not only did San Antonio shoot well -- 55 percent for the game --
but it pounded the glass to create second and third chances, and
the Spurs' crisp, quick passing led to numerous open shots against
the sluggish Warriors.
Troy Murphy had 27 points for Golden State, which will have
played 17 games in the first month without more than one day off
between games. The difficult schedule, which also includes playing
on consecutive nights four times, seems to be taking its toll. The
Warriors are the league's only team with such a schedule in the
season's opening month and they were a step behind most of the
"Or two [steps]," coach Mike Montgomery said. "They performed
at an extremely high level and we obviously did not."
Jason Richardson was held to 10 points, 12 below his team-best
22.4 average. Baron Davis wasn't much better, managing just six
points and five assists in one of Golden State's worst offensive
games this season.
Duncan scored back-to-back baskets to give San Antonio a 49-28
lead with 6:14 left in the second quarter, taking advantage of the
cold-shooting Warriors' troubles on both ends.
Despite their 10-2 start, the defending champion Spurs have been
disappointed in their lack of consistency on defense, but also
pleased they've still been able to win without playing their best.
The defense is slowly coming together.
"We played well tonight out of the gate and sustained it
throughout," Duncan said. "We jumped on them early, shot the ball
really well, and defensively our rotations were there. We're still
a work in progress."
Warriors rookie forward Ike Diogu made his NBA debut after
missing the preseason and first 12 games after breaking a bone in
his left hand during training camp Oct. 9. He hadn't practiced at
all with the team before the game.
Diogu received a warm ovation when he entered in the first
quarter, then immediately gave up a short jumper to Nazr Mohammed.
Diogu, wearing a padded glove over his tender hand, swished a
12-footer for his first points with 10:16 left in the second period
and finished with 11 points and three rebounds.
"It feels really nice to finally get on the court," Diogu
said. "It's good to be out there. It's going to take a while to
get back in the groove. I was a little rusty coming out."
The Spurs needed double overtime to beat the Warriors 136-134 in
the teams' last meeting April 10, but dominated the boards this
time to help put the game out of reach in a hurry.
San Antonio held a 33-11 rebounding edge at halftime and built a
66-36 lead at the break -- the Warriors' lowest halftime total this
Golden State held a closed-door meeting after the game and the
locker room didn't open for close to 30 minutes.
"We're very disappointed in how we played tonight," center
Adonal Foyle said. "We were a little back on our heels and they
brought it at us."
Nick Van Exel, who played the 2003-04 season with Golden State
before hurting his knee and returning to Houston to rehabilitate
after playing only 39 games, was booed when he checked in to start
the second quarter and then every time he touched the ball.
The Warriors shot 38 percent and lost for the 27th time in
31 games against the Spurs. ... Diogu, selected ninth overall in
the NBA draft out of Arizona State, will be eased into the system
slowly, coach Mike Montgomery said. "I told him, 'When in doubt,
go post up," Montgomery said. "What we don't want him to do is
just stand there not doing anything." ... Montgomery gave his
players Thursday off for Thanksgiving, saying he didn't think they
would have accomplished much considering the team's demanding