8:30 PM ET, November 23, 2009
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
Duncan had 24 points and 12 rebounds and the Spurs halted the Milwaukee Bucks' three-game winning streak with a 112-98 victory Monday night, getting their second blowout in as many games after an unusually lackluster start to the season.
Duncan could hardly be blamed while San Antonio was 4-6: the Spurs had been 0-4 when their All-Star forward scored 20 or more.
"We'll win a lot more games if he scores 20. I'll tell you that much," Spurs guard Roger Mason said.
Ersan Ilyasova led Milwaukee with 20 points. Brandon Jennings scored 12 -- held well below his rookie-leading average of 25.3 points per game -- and Michael Redd scored four points off the bench in his first action in nine games because of a knee injury.
San Antonio's bench was better. Matt Bonner had 23 points and the Spurs won consecutive games for only the second time this season. Bonner was 6-of-8 from behind the arc, George Hill scored 14 and Mason had 11 as San Antonio's reserves outscored its starting five.
"That's what we need when the energy isn't there or someone isn't playing well, for other people to step up," Duncan said.
The win came after the Spurs clobbered Washington 106-84 on Saturday night, and Duncan credited the improved play the last two games to better ball movement. The Spurs have won two in a row after losing three straight, when Duncan averaged 21.6 points and 11 rebounds during that skid.
Five of San Antonio's six wins have come when scoring 100 points or more.The Spurs (6-6) climbed back to .500 during what has been one of the worst starts to a season in the Duncan era, and play four of their next five at home.
"I was getting to the lane. But my shots just weren't falling," Jennings said. "It was an off night."
The Bucks entered the game as the top rebounding team in the league but were bullied on the boards 46-29. San Antonio pulled away with a season-high 37 points in the third quarter, when Duncan had 15 points and five rebounds.
"We had a hard time in general," Bucks coach Scott Skiles said. "We had a hard time keeping them out of the paint. We got destroyed on the boards."
Redd played 11 minutes off the bench and showed a predictable bit of rust while playing for the first time in four weeks. His first shot was a jumper that badly missed the rim, and he finished 1 of 3 from the field and made just one of six free throws.
Bucks coach Scott Skiles said Redd returned probably a little sooner than even he expected. But the 10th-year guard fared well after getting through his first contact practice Sunday.
Milwaukee lost for the second time in nine games as the Bucks (9-3) came to San Antonio off to their best start since the 2001-02 season
Spurs G Manu Ginobili is said to be making progress on recovering from his strained left groin, but coach Gregg Popovich offered no firm timetable for his return. Ginobili has not played since Nov. 18. ... Bucks C Kurt Thomas, the only one of three Spurs players Milwaukee kept in the Jefferson deal this summer, had six points and five rebounds.
SAN ANTONIO - NOVEMBER 23: Tim Duncan #21 of the San Antonio Spurs shoots against Carlos Delfino #10 and Charlie...(Photo by D. Clarke Evans/NBAE via Getty Images)
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||41-83 (.494)||40-78 (.513)|
|3PM-3PA||7-16 (.438)||10-21 (.476)|
|FTM-FTA||9-14 (.643)||22-26 (.846)|
|Fast Break Points||13||10|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||21 (1/0)||14 (0/0)|
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