Mohammed, in the opening lineup for the third straight game, had
15 points to lead six Spurs in double figures in their 92-75 win
over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night. He also
contributed 14 rebounds, nine on the offensive end.
"I'm just happy to be out there and getting more of an
opportunity to play," he said. "You know, when it comes right
down to it, one of us or both of us are going to have to play well
to compete for another championship."
Since the All-Star break, both of the players that coach Gregg
Popovich calls his "two-headed monster" have stepped up.
Nesterovic started all but one of San Antonio's first 52 games,
but the centers reversed roles after Mohammed's 18-point,
20-rebound performance in an overtime loss in Philadelphia on Feb.
In the last three games -- all victories -- Mohammed has averaged
10.3 points and 8.3 rebounds. Nesterovic added 10 points and six
rebounds on Saturday.
"Some nights it gets easier, you know, it just falls into your
hands and on some nights you must work really hard," Nesterovic
said. "It's always good when coach says you play good."
The Warriors led by three points early, but San Antonio erased
that lead for good with a 19-4 run late in the first quarter.
"We have lost a little bit of confidence and the Spurs are not
a good team to try to get your confidence back," said Golden State
coach Mike Montgomery, whose team shot just 34 percent.
Tim Duncan finished with a season-low nine points on 4-for-17
shooting, but he grabbed 16 rebounds.
Rookie guard Monta Ellis led Golden State with a career-high 16
points. Troy Murphy had 12 points and 12 rebounds, while Derek
Fisher scored 11.
"When I hit my first three jumpers in a row, I knew I was going
to have a good night," said Ellis, who is averaging 4.5 points in
limited minutes. "I just need to keep doing what I'm doing and
then the game will come to me, everything will be good."
Jason Richardson, who came into the game averaging nearly 23
points, had 10 while being defended mostly by Bowen.
A three-point play by Murphy gave Golden State a 10-7 lead
before Parker started a 12-0 run for the Spurs by hitting a
21-footer and then finding Duncan for a layup. Bowen, who opened
the game with a pair of long jumpers, made two more during San
After Mike Dunleavy ended the run with a basket, the Spurs
finished the first quarter by outscoring the Warriors 9-2.
A layup by Adonal Foyle trimmed the deficit to eight points
midway through the second, but Duncan and Mohammed both scored
inside before Barry connected on his second 3-pointer to make it
San Antonio's lead grew to 19 at halftime, as the Warriors shot
only 37 percent in the first two periods.
The Spurs, who shot 8-for-25 in the third, extended their lead
to as many as 22 points.
San Antonio's Robert Horry missed his fifth straight game
with a lower abdominal strain, while Baron Davis missed his fifth
straight for the Warriors with a right ankle sprain. ... Fisher,
starting in Davis' place, has averaged 15.8 points in the last five
games. ... Mohammed's double-double was his fourth of the season.
... Parker got his third block of the season in the third on a
layup attempt by Fisher. ... Golden State is 1-10 on the road in
2006 after winning eight of 15 road games in November and December.