Spurs rip Lakers; Warriors up
Top pros back Pradera bid in Ladies Challenge
LOS ANGELES (AFP) — Kawhi Leonard poured in 31 points in just three quarters as the San Antonio Spurs dominated in every facet of play Thursday with an emphatic 134-94 blowout of the Los Angeles Lakers.
San Antonio's 134 points were a season high, as were the 72 points scored by the Spurs in the first half and the overall margin of victory of 40 points.
Pau Gasol added 22 points for San Antonio, while LaMarcus Aldridge and Tony Parker added 13 each, all in just three quarters of the lopsided game.
The Spurs also got 12 points from Jonathan Simmons and 10 from Dejounte Murray and a game-high 12 rebounds from Dewayne Dedmon.
San Antonio was a bad mood heading into Thursday's home game after losing by three points to the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.
The Spurs took out their frustrations on a meek Laker team as four of San Antonio's starters finished in double figures at AT&T Center.
''I respect the way the Spurs played tonight -- granted we didn't put up a ton of fight -- but it's beautiful to see championship teams and the way they came out after one loss,'' Lakers coach Luke Walton said.
In New York, Tyreke Evans scored 14 of his season-high 29 points in the fourth quarter and the New Orleans Pelicans overcame the absence of Anthony Davis with a 104-95 victory over the Brooklyn Nets.
Evans made 10 of 15 shots in a seasonhigh 27 minutes. He missed the first 26 games of the season while recovering from knee surgery. Davis missed his second game of the season because of a left hip injury.
Elsewhere, Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala connected on a pair of three-pointers apiece during a long-range shooting exhibition that powered the Golden State Warriors to a 127-107 win over the Detroit Pistons.
Riding double-figure scoring from four starters, the Pistons were down 68-65 in the fourth minute of the third period before the Warriors stepped up their play to earn a season-series sweep.
Meanwhile, the New York Knicks fined Derrick Rose around $200,000 (188,350 euros) for his mysterious no-show, the US media reported on Thursday.
Rose created a sensation on Monday when he failed to appear for the Knicks' 110-96 defeat to the New Orleans Pelicans.
LPGA Tour-bound Dottie Ardina and three other Filipino pros head to Pampanga today to provide support to Team Pradera’s bid in its much-awaited showdown with Team Southeast Asia in the first Pradera Ladies Challenge at the Pradera Golf and Country Club in Lubao.
“It’s an exciting duel and we hope to help motivate our players against their counterparts from Southeast Asia,” said Ardina, who with Cyna Rodriguez,
The three-day events starts on tomorrow.
Princess Superal and Chihiro Ikeda, will be playing a rare supporting role as Team Pradera’s crack mix of jungolfers and amateurs slug it out against their SEA counterparts in the Ryder Cupstyle duel.
The four pros are veterans of team competitions, including the SEA Games, the World Amateurs and the Queen Sirikit Cup with Ardina winning the Sirikit individual gold in 2011, and their inputs or mere presence are expected to help boost the host squad’s confidence.
“Team SEA boasts of a mix of talented players some of whom we have played in the past. We hope our mere presence will inspire or prop up our team,” said Superal, many-time spearhead of the national team in various international competitions.
Both Team Pradera and Team SEA are expected to come into the event in top form, having competed in the just-concluded Philippine Ladies Open but the hosts hope to cash in on whatever edge they may have in terms of local knowledge and chemistry.
“The four pros’ presence is indeed a big boost to the team’s cause and we hope our players will draw inspiration from them and be motivated to dish out their best against their equally talented rivals,” said Archen Cayabyab, who with Lubao Mayor Mylyn PinedaCayabyab and Coach Norman Sto. Domingo, spearheaded the staging of the event.
Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant drives to the basket against Detroit Pistons’ Andre Drummond during their NBA match which the Warriors won, 127-107. (AP)