Notebook: Spurs 108, Kings 101



Posted Apr 13, 2013 12:24 AM

Tim Price, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Tony Parker played for only the second time in the last five games, but he shook off the rust to score 22 points with 11 assists to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 108-101 victory over the Sacramento Kings on Friday at AT&T Center.

Getting Parker back is key. Prior to the game, the Spurs announced that veteran shooting guard Stephen Jackson had been waived. Finishing a contract that was worth $10 million in its final year, Jackson was reported to be disagreeing with coach Gregg Popovich over his role off the bench. Popovich did not divulge specifics.

The Spurs (58-21) came into the game having lost four of their last six as they have battled injuries to Parker (neck and ankle), Boris Diaw (out at least three weeks after having a cyst removed from his back), Manu Ginobili (right hamstring strain) and now the issue with Jackson.

The Kings (28-51) have lost five of their last six, but actually were working on a two-game road winning streak from last month. Sacramento got 19 points and 12 rebounds from DeMarcus Cousins.

QUOTABLE: "We finally got TP (Parker) back after losing him for a couple of games, so we had our offense going tonight. He started passing the ball early and got everyone involved, which is why he's an NBA All-Star."
-- The Spurs' Kawhi Leonard (15 points on 7-for-14 shooting despite missing all five 3-point attempts).

THE STAT: The Kings outscored San Antonio 88-85 from the second quarter through the rest of the game. They lost the first quarter 23-13 while shooting less than 21 percent.

TURNING POINT: Though the Kings never led, they cut it to a one-point game and trailed by three as late as 1 1/2 minute to go in the third quarter after Tyreke Evans hit a pair of 3-pointers and Marcus Thornton added another. But San Antonio closed out the third with seven-straight points to put the lead back to 10, and the Spurs led by double digits until the final minute.

QUOTABLE II: "We got aggressive (in the second quarter), but we should have played that way from the start."
-- Cousins

HOT: The last time anyone saw Parker on the court is when he struggled through 25 ½ minutes and shot 1-for-6 in a loss at Oklahoma City. By going 9-for-13 tonight (he didn't take a shot in the first quarter then went 5-for-5 in the second) he had his best game since he wcored 30 points and had 11 assists at Sacramento on Feb. 19.

NOT: Isaiah Thomas hasn't shot 50 percent in a game for the Kings over the last five contests. During that span he's (26-for-72, 36 percent) and he went 3-for-10 tonight.

FANTASY SPOTLIGHT: Parker had his first double-double since March 27 when he scored 18 points and had 11 assists in a one-point homecourt victory over Denver.

GOOD MOVE: Popovich usually is cautious with star players like Parker and Tim Duncan (18 points and five blocked shots tonight), but with Diaw, Ginobili and Jackson out of action there was practically no choice but to go with the vets. Each of the starters played more than 30 minutes and Popovich worked at getting a rotation set from off the bench.

BAD MOVE: The Kings were hanging tough late in the third, being as close as a point behind with just less than six minutes left in the quarter and then being down by three with 1 1/2 minutes remaining before the fourth. But the Kings committed a turnover on a shot-clock violation, blowing a possession created by Chuck Hayes' offensive rebound. Kings coach Keith Smart argued the call and was called for a technical.

ROOKIE WATCH: Nando De Colo got all the backup point guard minutes for the Spurs in relief of Parker. He hit one of his two shots and had two assists with two turnovers.

NOTABLE: Inclusive of the 4-1 win in the 2006 playoffs, the Spurs have defeated the Kings 25 of the last 27 meetings. This is the Spurs' fifth sweep of the season series in the last six seasons). ... Patrick Patterson missed the last two games for the Kings with a sore bck, but he played 18 1/2 minutes and shot 4-for-8 for eight points. ... In the four games between the teams this season, Sacramento shot better than 40 percent in both games at San Antonio, but less than 40 percent at the Kings home.

UP NEXT: For the Kings, Sunday @ Houston, Monday @ Oklahoma City, Wednesday vs. L.A. Clippers. For the Spurs, Sunday @ L.A. Lakers, Monday @ Golden State, Wednesday vs. Minnesota.