Blazers beat Spurs to close in on West lead
AP January 19, 2014, 12:05 am TWN
SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- Portland closed within half a game of the NBA Western Conference lead by beating San Antonio 109-100 in a bad-tempered clash on Friday, led by LaMarcus Aldridge's 26 points and 13 rebounds.
In a day of key games for the top teams in the West, Oklahoma City beat Golden State with Kevin Durant scoring a career-high 54 points, while the Los Angeles Clippers increased its Pacific Division lead by downing New York, and Dallas edged Phoenix.
Portland's Wesley Matthews scored 24 points as the Trail Blazers ended San Antonio's six-game winning streak and stayed ahead of Oklahoma City in the Northwest Division.
Damian Lillard had 21 points and eight assists and Mo Williams added 13 points as Portland snapped San Antonio's six-game winning streak. Matthews shot 6 for 7 on 3-pointers.
Manu Ginobili had a season-high 29 points for the Spurs but fellow veterans Tim Duncan and Tony Parker struggled in the second half.
Oklahoma City beat Golden State thanks chiefly to a superb performance from Kevin Durant.
He made 19 of 28 field goals and 11 of 13 free throws in his third straight game with at least 36 points.
Serge Ibaka had 21 points and eight rebounds for the Thunder, who shot 58 percent from the field and recorded their highest score of the season.
Stephen Curry had 37 points and 11 assists for the Warriors, who were also impressive in shooting 52 percent but simply could not contain Durant.
Dallas rookie Shane Larkin sank two free throws with 11 seconds to play to secure a 110-107 win for the Mavericks over Phoenix.
The Suns had a chance to tie the game but P.J. Tucker's try from the corner rimmed out, and replays showed his foot was on the line so it would have been for only two points, anyway.
Larkin finished with 18 points, and Monta Ellis scored 24 for the Mavericks, who never trailed.
Goran Dragic scored 28 points for the Suns.
Los Angeles' Blake Griffin scored 32 points as the Clippers opened a seven-game road trip with a 109-95 win over New York; their fifth straight victory.
Jamal Crawford added 29 for the Clippers, who dominated the second half to hand the Knicks their third consecutive loss.
Carmelo Anthony had 26 points and 20 rebounds for the Knicks. It was the first 20-20 game for the Knicks for four years.
Miami ended a rare three-game losing streak with a 101-86 win over Philadelphia, with LeBron James having 21 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds.
Chris Bosh scored 25 points for the Heat, who led by 25 points and cruised to victory.
Tony Wroten led the Sixers with 13 points.
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