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Blazers stun Spurs at home

By Contributing Writer Kris Rodriguez
On March 13, 2013

The San Antonio Spurs hosted the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday, March 8th. The Spurs, who own the best record in the league, were favored to win, but the Blazers played spoilers in front of a San Antonio sellout crowd of 18,581. Portland would go on to hand San Antonio just their fourth loss at home of the season, 136-106.

At the end of the first half, the game was all tied up 57-57. Tim Duncan led the Spurs with 12 points and five rebounds and appeared to be on pace for a good game. J.J. Hickson led the Blazers offense through the first half with 19 points and five rebounds. Both the Spurs and Blazers shot roughly above 55 percent.

The second half of regulation was a completely different story for both teams. While the Spurs dominated the glass in the first half, the roles reversed in the second. Portland out-rebounded and outshot San Antonio. Trail Blazer and Rookie of the Year candidate Damian Lillard, who leads all NBA rookies in scoring (18.6 ppg) and assists (6.4 ppg), caught fire and lit up the Spurs for a total of 35 points and nine assists. LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 26 points, and Hickson had 23 points and 11 rebounds. The Blazers as a unit shot 61.6 percent from the field and 61.9 percent behind the arc, while the Spurs shot 52.4 percent and but a low 31.6 percent for their 3-point shooting.

"It seemed like they were just clicking on all cylinders," said San Antonio's Danny Green when asked about Portland's shooting. "They came out in the first half shooting pretty well. We figured the tables would turn and they would slow down a little bit. It seemed as if the second half, they just kept going."

The Spurs hung in during the third quarter, but the Blazers blasted the home team in the fourth and put up 46 points to put the game out of hand. The Spurs fell to 48-15 on the season, but still hold the best record in the league despite the loss. Portland improved their season record to 29-32 with the win.

The San Antonio Spurs (48-15) host the Oklahoma City Thunder (46-16) on Monday, March 11. The Spurs look to improve their conference lead over the Thunder, who trail the Spurs in the standings by 1.5 games. Tip-off is scheduled at 6:30 pm.

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