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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, January 1, 2010

Duncan, Spurs too hot for Heat


Associated Press

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Tim Duncan

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SAN ANTONIO Manu Ginobili and the San Antonio Spurs would've been relieved to beat a winning team by even a slim margin.

A blowout like this made the victory all the more satisfying.

Tim Duncan had 23 points and 10 rebounds, and San Antonio beat a winning team for the first time in a month with a 108-78 victory over the Miami Heat last night the most lopsided Spurs victory this season.

Miami, meanwhile, was handed its most humiliating loss so far. San Antonio has won 10 of 12, but Miami (16-14) is the only winning team among those victories.

"It was a long time," Ginobili said.

Before the game, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said he's been "not quite as impressed" as his team's recent roll may suggest since its dominance has only been against weaker competition. Nonetheless, San Antonio won its fourth straight.

"I believe that we got a lot to improve to really become contenders and be respected as one of the best teams in the league," Ginobili said. "We're not that steady so far this season, but we're on the right track."

Michael Beasley scored 26 for the Heat, and Dwyane Wade had 16 before watching the blowout from the bench in the fourth quarter.

The Heat fell on the road for the second consecutive night. Back-to-back games have been trouble for Miami, which is 1-7 whether playing on the first or second night.

Miami made just 10 field goals in the second half, and afterward, coach Erik Spoelstra vowed to "re-evaluate" and talk with his team.

"They throttled us," Spoelstra said. "We got what we deserved tonight. Very disappointing loss."

Duncan scored 13 in the first quarter, but the Spurs didn't need him much after leading 58-49 at halftime.

Bulls 98, Pistons 87: Derrick Rose scored 22 points, and Joakim Noah added 15 points and 21 rebounds to help visiting Chicago hand Detroit its ninth straight loss. Chicago never trailed in snapping an eight-game road losing streak.

Rockets 97, Mavericks 94: Aaron Brooks scored 30 points, Shane Battier hit a 3-pointer with 2:11 left to break an 89-all tie and host Houston never trailed again in beating Dallas. Brooks followed Battier with a 3-pointer for 95-89 lead with 1:35 left.

Thunder 87, Jazz 86: Kevin Durant scored 31 points to tie a franchise record for consecutive 30-point games and Nick Collison hit the two free throws with 4.5 seconds left to lift host Oklahoma over Utah. Durant surpassed 30 points for the sixth straight game, tying a franchise record set by Spencer Haywood in January 1972.

Clippers 104, 76ers 88: Chris Kaman had 26 points and 10 rebounds as host Los Angeles, playing without coach Mike Dunleavy, beat Philadelphia. Dunleavy missed the game after aggravating a herniated disc in his back while at home getting ready to go to Staples Center.