NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, January 28th (All times Eastern)
San Antonio Spurs (33-11) at Houston Rockets (29-17), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The San Antonio Spurs haven't been a model of consistency lately and will try to gain a semblance of order Tuesday against the Southwest-rival Houston Rockets.
The Spurs have rotated wins and losses over the previous six games and suffered a 113-101 loss to the Miami Heat Sunday in a rematch of last season's NBA Finals. The Heat won their second straight and third overall title.
San Antonio was led by Tim Duncan's 23 points and Boris Diaw followed with 15. Marco Belinelli and Tony Parker scored 12 and 11 points, respectively, for the Spurs, who are two games behind Oklahoma City for the West's top spot and five games in front of Houston for the division lead.
Chris Bosh scored a game-high 24 points and LeBron James added 18, as the Heat shot a sizzling 58.1 percent from the field.
"They shot it really well, came with their 'A' game," Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said of the Heat.
The Spurs allowed an opponent to shoot over 50 percent for only the sixth time this season. They have scored 100 or more points in 15 straight games, the longest stretch under Popovich, and had a 22-game run back in 1994-95. San Antonio is 28-8 when scoring at least 100 points.
Meanwhile, Duncan surpassed Shaquille O'Neal for sole possession of sixth place on the NBA's blocked shots list and moved past Allen Iverson for 20th all-time in points. He now has 24,691 points and 2,733 blocks for his career.
Houston will begin a quick stretch through the Lone Star State against the Spurs and Dallas Mavericks, and was swept in a home-and-home set with Memphis after winning three straight and eight of 10 games.
James Harden led Houston with 16 points, while Dwight Howard tallied 10 points and 12 rebounds for the Rockets, who made 37 percent of their shots and received 11 points from Chandler Parsons one night after he pumped in 34 Friday.
"They beat us (Friday) night, and they beat us up again (Saturday). They got offensive rebounds. They moved the ball. They caught us being stagnant, and they were better than us by far," Rockets head coach Kevin McHale said.
The Rockets are 18-7 in Space City and will visit Dallas on Wednesday. They have won the first two matchups with the Spurs this season and will close out the regular season series April 14 in Houston. The Rockets have won three in a row against the Spurs, losers in four of five and five of the last seven trips to the Toyota Center.
Houston last won a season series with San Antonio back in 1996-97, when it took three of four matchups between the Southwest foes.
01/28 10:47:08 ET