Spurs visit Memphis in Southwest showdown

10:14 AM, Jan 7, 2014   |    comments
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(SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of Southwest Division rivals clash Tuesday on Beale Street, where the San Antonio Spurs will visit the Memphis Grizzlies.

The Spurs have defeated the Grizzlies twice already this season and are 10-4 in the previous 14 matchups between the familiar foes. The Spurs posted a 102-86 victory in their last trip to FedExForum on Nov. 22.

San Antonio is aiming for its fourth straight road win and is 13-3 away from the Alamo City, where it registered a 116-92 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers the last time out on Saturday thanks to Tiago Splitter's season-high 22 points. However, Splitter sustained a shoulder sprain in the fourth quarter and is expected to miss the next three to five weeks.

The Spurs moved to 13-0 on the season when Splitter scores in double figures and 8-0 in games after a loss. New York won 105-101 on Thursday.

Tin Duncan had 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, while Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili scored 17 and 15 points, respectively, for San Antonio, which made 55.6 percent to make up for a lowly 4-of-18 showing from beyond the arc and had a 70-35 lead at halftime. The Spurs scored a season-best 76 points in the paint and had a season-high 34 assists.

"Our first half was great. We stopped a little bit (in the second half), but the first half was fun to watch. It was a very good first half," said Ginobili.

San Antonio has won seven of its last 10 games and ranks fifth in the NBA with 103.9 points per game on the road.

Memphis has alternated wins and losses in its previous seven games and closed out a three-game road trip (2-1) with Sunday's 112-84 win against Detroit.

The Grizzlies trailed by a 56-51 score at halftime, then came alive in the last two quarters, outscoring the Pistons, 61-28, for their biggest blowout win of the season. Jon Leuer matched a career-high with 23 points off the bench and Ed Davis tallied 17 and 11 rebounds.

Zach Randolph finished with 16 points and 16 boards for his 18th double-double in the last 24 games and both Tayshaun Prince and Mike Conley netted 15 points for the Grizzlies, who made 8-of-15 3-pointers and handed out a season-high 31 assists.

"Their offensive rebounding fuels their energy and fast break and when you take that away, you put yourself in a position to play good help defense," Prince told NBA.com. "We were able to do that in the third quarter and that was huge for us."

Memphis' bench outscored Detroit's reserves, 52-19, and is posting an average of 41.9 ppg in the last 12 games.

The Grizzlies will begin a four-game homestand Tuesday versus San Antonio, Phoenix, Atlanta and Oklahoma City, and are 7-11 at FedExForum. They set a franchise record with a 32-9 home ledger a season ago.

In injury news for Memphis, guard Tony Allen (hand) is questionable Tuesday and Marc Gasol, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, is still nursing a balky knee.

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