Surging Spurs host sagging Blazers
(SportsNetwork.com) - The San Antonio Spurs are back in the Alamo City for three straight games, starting with Wednesday's matchup with the Portland Trail Blazers.
The Spurs will also host the Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz, and have won six in a row at the AT&T Center, where they own a 23-8 record.
San Antonio has won seven in a row overall and 14 of its last 17 games, including Tuesday's 104-96 victory against the Chicago Bulls. The Spurs led 38-14 after the first quarter and survived Chicago's rally in the second half to stay a half-game ahead of Oklahoma City for the West's top seed.
"Best first half we have played in a long time. Hopefully we are not peaking. It's not the right time," Spurs reserve Manu Ginobili said.
Ginobili and Tony Parker scored 22 and 20 points, respectively, while Kawhi Leonard had 16 points. Tim Duncan was limited to four points, but grabbed nine rebounds and handed out five assists for the Spurs, who made 50.6 percent from the field and sank 12-of-21 3-pointers.
The Spurs are headed toward another postseason and sit 3 1/2 games ahead of Houston for the Southwest lead.
Portland limps into the Alamo City having lost the first three tests on a five-game southern road trip. It has dropped decisions to Dallas, Houston and Memphis, and suffered 109-99 defeat to the Grizzlies on Tuesday.
Damian Lillard's 32 points went to waste and LaMarcus Aldridge added 19 and 10 rebounds. Nicolas Batum was the other double-digit scorer with 15 points and also pulled down eight rebounds for the Blazers.
Aldridge made just 8-of-23 shots and Lillard was 8-of-21 from the field.
"I'm just missing shots," Aldridge admitted. "I have had great looks and I've missed them. I am going to find my rhythm and I am going to make those shots that I've been missing soon."
The Blazers are 18-14 on the road and fifth in the West standings, two games behind the Rockets. They will close the trek Friday at New Orleans.
Blazers guard Mo Williams is questionable against the Spurs with a hip issue.
Portland has won two of the first three meetings with San Antonio this season and is 4-1 in the last five games in this series. The Spurs, though, have a 14-5 record in the last 19 home games in this series.
Wednesday's game features two of the highest scoring teams in the league, as Portland sits second with 107.5 ppg and San Antonio is averaging 104.6 ppg.
03/12 09:59:51 ET