Ibaka, Thun­der stop Spurs

Ok­la­homa City ex­tends win­ning streak to 11 be­hind third-quar­ter run.

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS BRIEFING -

Serge Ibaka tied his ca­reer-best with 25 points and grabbed a sea­son­high 17 re­bounds, and the host Ok­la­homa City Thun­der beat the San An­to­nio Spurs 107-93 Mon­day night for their 11th straight win.

The Thun­der took con­trol with a string of 11 straight points dur­ing the third quar­ter, punc­tu­ated by Nick Col­li­son’s put­back that made it 7156 with 4:27 re­main­ing in the pe­riod. On the next pos­ses­sion, Ibaka ripped away his third straight of­fen­sive re­bound be­fore head­ing to­ward mid­court and flex­ing his mus­cles.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich kept his starters parked on the bench through­out the fourth quar­ter, even as San An­to­nio cut an 18-point lead in half with about 5½ min­utes left.

Tony Parker and Nando De Colo had 14 points apiece to lead the Spurs, who could have cre­ated a vir­tual tie for the best record with a win.

Manu Gi­no­bili did not play for the Spurs be­cause he bruised his left quadri­ceps in Satur­day’s win at Bos­ton.

Rus­sell West­brook chipped in 22 points and nine as­sists, Kevin Martin scored 20 and Kevin Du­rant had 19 as Ok­la­homa City main­tained sole pos­ses­sion of the best record in the NBA.

It was the teams’ first meet­ing in Ok­la­homa City since the Thun­der over­came a 2-0 deficit in the West­ern Con­fer­ence fi­nals by win­ning the next four games. The Spurs drew a mea­sure of re­venge in the sea­son opener by beat­ing Ok­la­homa City on Parker’s jumper as time ex­pired.

Rock­ets 109, Knicks 96: Jeremy Lin won again at Madi­son Square Garden — and for the first time this sea­son, New York didn’t.

Lin had 22 points and eight as­sists in his re­turn to New York as Hous­ton ended the Knicks’ 10game home win­ning streak to open the sea­son.

Cheered, then jeered, Lin added an­other mas­ter­piece to the ones he put to­gether last sea­son dur­ing the height of Lin­san­ity. No longer the fan fa­vorite he was when wear­ing the home uni­form, Lin got a mixed re­cep­tion when he left the game with 2:25 re­main­ing and the Rock­ets lead­ing by 16.

James Har­den had 28 points and 10 re­bounds for the Rock­ets, who blew out the Knicks for the sec­ond time this sea­son. They have won the last seven meet­ings, in­clud­ing a 131-103 rout Nov. 23.

Rookie Chris Copeland scored a ca­reer-high 29 points for the Knicks, who played with­out lead­ing scorer Carmelo An­thony and had their four-game win­ning streak snapped. They fell to 18-6, match­ing the record they fin­ished last sea­son with un­der Mike Wood­son.

The Rock­ets outscored the Knicks 54-29 over the mid­dle two quar­ters, deny­ing New York its first 11-0 start at home since 1991-92.

Magic 102, Tim­ber­wolves 93: Glen Davis scored 28 points and J.J. Redick had 18 points and seven as­sists for host Or­lando.

Griz­zlies 80, Bulls 71: Mike Con­ley had 17 points, Zach Ran­dolph added 10 points and 15 re­bounds and host Mem­phis over­came a poor start.

Clip­pers 88, Pis­tons 76: Ja­mal Craw­ford scored 15 points and Chris Paul added 14 to lead vis­it­ing Los An­ge­les to its 10th straight win.

HENNY RAY ABRAMS /AP

The Knicks’ Tyson Chan­dler com­mits a fla­grant foul against the Rock­ets’ Jeremy Lin.

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