Duncan scores 16 and Spurs turn on D to beat Blazers

SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- It was a decidedly routine night for the San Antonio Spurs at home on Tuesday.

But after some of their recent games, no news was good news.

"Point-wise we're doing a pretty good job. Tonight we did a pretty good job," said Tim Duncan, who had 16 points in the Spurs' 98-84 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.

But, he added: "I still can't say we're where we want to be."

Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker had 14 points apiece, Brent Barry added 13 and Bruce Bowen scored 12 -- all on 3-pointers -- for the Spurs.

Although San Antonio won Sunday on the road against Memphis to snap a three-game losing streak, Tuesday marked the team's first home game since a 90-85 loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Friday.

"We shot the ball well tonight and that helped us keep our lead," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "Overall, pretty good team defense to hold them to 84. Just go on to the next game tomorrow."

Zach Randolph led the Blazers with 25 points, followed by LaMarcus Aldridge with 17, Jarrett Jack with 13 and Brandon Roy with 10.

"We didn't look like we belonged here," Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "We made a lot of mistakes with the ball."

Portland had 19 turnovers for 28 points, while San Antonio committed 15 turnovers for 12 points.

"But I like the fact that we were aggressive," McMillan continued. "If we keep doing that, winning will find its way into that locker room."

Parker was back Tuesday and played 21 minutes after sitting out Sunday's game against Memphis with a strained hip.

"We had a good win. We played pretty good defense and shot the ball well," Parker said. "Overall, it was a good win."

Bowen said every night the Spurs' defense learns a new lesson.

"It's important for us to get things the right way. Even if they score, if we're doing it the right way it means we have progress. That's what it's about right now," Bowen said.

Likewise, Aldridge said he's learned from the Spurs.

"Being a veteran team, even when things got tough for them, they stay together," he said. "When things get tough for us, we tend to separate and do things on our own."

The Blazers took a 21-18 lead into the second quarter, but San Antonio was ahead 51-44 at halftime. Parker had 10 points in the half and Duncan added nine.

Randolph led the Blazers at the half with 14 points, followed by Jack with 11.

Both teams went 18-of-37, just under 50 percent, in the first half, but San Antonio shot 90 percent from the foul line to Portland's 67 percent.

The Spurs opened the third quarter with an 15-4 run that included a fast-break 3-pointer from Bowen and four free throws from Ginobili.

San Antonio was up by as many as 19 points, but Portland answered with a 12-2 run led largely by Roy to put them back within nine with just under two minutes to go in the quarter. Randolph had 10 in the period.

The Spurs took a 77-68 lead into the final 12 minutes. They opened the quarter with a 10-3 run and at one point had an 18-point lead.

Game notes
The Spurs will take on the Nuggets in Denver on Wednesday. Portland visits Dallas. ... Spurs F Robert Horry, who scored a season-high 18 points Sunday in Memphis, didn't play Tuesday. Popovich said Horry wasn't hurt and would be "available" for Wednesday's game. ... San Antonio improved to 25-11; Portland fell to 14-22.