SPURS GAMEDAY: Silver and Black start new year in Big Apple

NEW YORK - Gameday at a glance

Spurs (25-12) vs. New York Knicks (18-18)
When, where: Tuesday, 6:30 p.m., New York
Season series: Spurs lead 1-0
Last meeting: Spurs 119, Knicks 107, Dec. 28, AT&T Center
Spurs’ last game: Lost to Pistons 93-79, Saturday, Detroit
Knicks’ last game: Beat Pelicans 105-103, Saturday, New Orleans
Spurs’ last 10 games, streak: 6-4, lost one
Knicks’ last 10 games, streak: 5-5, won one
Notable: Kawhi Leonard (return from injury management) is probable for Tuesday night’s game and Rudy Gay (right heel bursitis) is out . . . The Spurs finished 2017 with a 37-8 record (.822) at the AT&T Center. It’s the third consecutive year that they have won at least 80 percent of their home games.

Hello again.

Less than a week after meeting in San Antonio, the Spurs and New York Knicks square off again Tuesday night. But this time, they’ll play at Madison Square Garden.

Power forward LaMarcus Aldridge and center Pau Gasol combined for 42 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists in a 119-107 victory against New York last Thursday.

Aldridge led the Spurs with 25 points and Gasol recorded his fourth double-double of the season, finishing with 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting and 11 rebounds. Gasol also dished out seven assists.

The Silver and Black won comfortably despite playing without All-NBA forward Kawhi Leonard and losing steady backup forward Rudy Gay late in the third quarter. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich rested Leonard, who has played in only six games since returning from a lingering quad injury Dec. 12, and Gay went to the bench with a sore heel.

Gay was diagnosed with bursitis in his right heel the next day, and is expected to be out at least two weeks. The Spurs listed Leonard as probable for Tuesday night’s game in the Big Apple.

All five Spurs starters scored in double figures against the Knicks in the teams’ first meeting last week. Kyle Anderson, who subbed for Leonard, scored 16 points on 4-of-4 shooting from the field and going 8 for 8 at the free-throw line.

“He’s not Mr. Athlete, but really understands the game,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said of Anderson. “He has a really high basketball IQ, and he has a real herky-jerky game that’s kind of hard to guard at times, and he’s done those things before so it’s not a surprise.”

Danny Green went 5 of 8 from the field, scoring all 15 of his points from the three-point line, and Tony Parker finished with 14 points. Bryn Forbes scored 10 points and was the only reserve to finish in double figures.

The Spurs had a good night offensively, shooting 51.3 percent (41/80) overall and 45 percent (9/20) from beyond the arc. They finished with 28 assists and only nine turnovers.

Knicks power forward Kristaps Porzingis scored 18 points and had six blocks. Reserve forward Michael Beasley led New York with 23 points and starting guard Courtney Lee added 18.

“They have a real good thing with Pau and LaMarcus Aldridge playing at a high-low, and they find each other,” Porzingis said. “They’re the type of team that takes what the defense gives them. They don’t force things and it’s a nice way to play basketball, and I enjoy watching them.”

The Silver and Black had won three in a row before losing to Detroit 93-79 on Saturday night in the first of a three-game road trip. The Knicks are coming off a 105-103 win at New Orleans that snapped a four-game skid. Porzingis led the way with 30 points on 11-of-22 shooting.

New York starting guard Tim Hardaway Jr., sidelined with a stress injury in his left leg since Dec. 3, is listed as out for Tuesday night’s game. He averaged 17.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 21 games before sustaining the injury.

Up next for the Spurs after Tuesday’s game: at Philadelphia, Wednesday, 6 p.m. 

© 2018 KENS-TV


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