Feb 19, 2013; Sacramento, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs center Tiago Splitter (22) is called for a foul against Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) with San Antonio Spurs power forward Tim Duncan (21) during the second quarter at Sleep Train Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Nothing comes easy on the road. Coming off the 2013 NBA All-Star Break, San Antonio kicked off the second half of the season with a trip to the Power Balance Pavilion.
The Spurs did not disappoint, as the Kings did not have enough in the tank to overcome another strong San Antonio performance.
Fueling San Antonio’s 108-102 victory was none other than Tony Parker. Scoring 30 points and adding eleven assists, Parker helped extend San Antonio’s win streak to four games and puts them at 43-12 on the season.
Sacramento did themselves no favors shooting a dismal 18% from the floor in the first quarter. From the start, San Antonio took control thanks to a poor shooting Sacramento team, which was a direct effect from San Antonio’s stellar defense. The silver and black recorded nine steals and eight blocks, making life miserable for a Sacramento offense that struggled to find their rhythm.
The Spurs could never really pull away, though, and had to fend off several comeback attempts from the Sacramento Kings. However, San Antonio showed their depth, while Sacramento showed their youth.
San Antonio’s young guys really stepped up with Danny Green finishing with 21 points and Kawhi Leonard putting in 15 points. Sporting their silver alternate uniforms, the Spurs truly benefited from moving the ball so well and attacking Sacramento’s weak front court.
Demarcus Cousins can not do everything in the paint, and San Antonio made sure everyone knew. Tony Parker and Co. had no fear driving in on the Kings, and really put on display how bad of a defense the Kings possess this season.
Sacramento desperately needs maturity and better communication. San Antonio exploited the Kings all night long, but the Kings did not go down without a fight.
Isaiah Thomas lead the Kings with a team-high 22 points, and tried leading this team in a comeback effort. However, late in the game, the Spurs picked up key rebounds and in the waning seconds, Tyreke Evans did not give Sacramento a chance driving to the bucket down by six.
The Kings had a shot, but they could not close the game and pull off the upset. San Antonio now must prepare for another west coast match-up.
Thursday, the Spurs will face the Los Angeles Clippers in front of a national audience. TNT will broadcast the action from inside the Staples Center for a battle between two of the Western Conference’s best.
San Antonio’s 108-102 victory puts them three games up on Oklahoma City and four-and-a-half above the Clippers. The Spurs have held on to the best record for quite some time, but San Antonio needs to make a statement Thursday with their stars very much rested.