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May 27, 2017

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Spurs defeat Thunder to Spurs defeat Thunder to take 2-0 lead in playoffs

SAN ANTONIO -- Tony Parker finished with 22 points and Danny Green made seven-of-10 from three-point range as San Antonio beat Oklahoma City 112-107 to take a 2-0 lead in their playoff series.

Tim Duncan tallied 14 points and 12 rebounds and Manu Ginobili came off the bench to score 11 points for the Spurs, who posted their second straight dominating win in the Western Conference final series.

"We got off to a slow start but in the second quarter we moved the ball better and got it to our shooters," Duncan said.

The Spurs fell behind 26-24 after the first quarter but outscored the Thunder 88-51 the rest of the way. Teams that jump out to a 2-0 series lead have gone on to advance 94 percent of the time.

Game three will be Sunday in Oklahoma City.

"We cannot take anything for granted," added Ginobili. "It is never over until you win the fourth game."

Duncan, Ginobili and Parker combined for 47 points for the Spurs, who won game one 122-105.

The three longtime teammates also passed Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Michael Cooper as the all-time winningest trio in NBA playoff history, winning their 111th playoff contest together.

Duncan also racked up 28 minutes of playing time, passing former Los Angeles Laker Abdul-Jabbar for second most playoff minutes in league history in the process.

Duncan is just 27 minutes back of Laker Kobe Bryant's all-time mark of 8,641 and will likely pass him later in this series.

Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook didn't do enough Wednesday to make up for the loss of Serge Ibaka, who is out with a calf injury.

"It is easy to go hide and run and be negative but it is hard to stay positive and stay together in a time like this. But we got a good group and we are going to figure it out," Durant said.

Ibaka injured his left calf in game six of the league quarterfinals against the Los Angeles Clippers and is expected to miss the rest of the playoffs.

League MVP Durant and guard Westbrook scored 15 points apiece. The other three Thunder starters only scored four points between them.

"We're disappointed," said Thunder head coach Scott Brooks. "We're disappointed in how the game turned out."

The Thunder looked tired down the stretch at the end of the first half. Ginobili drained a shot from beyond the arc that sent the teams into halftime with San Antonio ahead 58-44.

The Spurs started the third with a 21-8 surge and never looked back.

"We want to make them work and keep them off the free-throw line," said Duncan of containing Durant and Westbrook.

"We know what we're walking into. They're so much better at home. They're going to have a lot of days to let it all fester."

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