Now that the novelty of Lin-sanity has simmered down a bit, needed attention.
The Spurs have jingled their way to an 11-game winning streak and pushed their mark on the annual Rodeo Road Trip to 7-0 with last night's 106-102 win against the Utah Jazz. They will try to keep up the torrid pace Tuesday against the Portland Trail Blazers at the Rose Garden.
Richard Jefferson stepped out of obscurity in the win at Salt Lake City and buried a big three-pointer with 6.5 seconds remaining. It was only his second field goal of the night and it proved to be a big one. Tony Parker continued his solid season with 23 points and 11 assists, while Tim Duncan and Matt Bonner both finished with 20 points for the Spurs, who are unbeaten in their last eight road games and 10-8 as the visitor.
"It's great for us, but there is absolutely no focus on it," Duncan said of the winning streak. "We're not even thinking about it. We're going to play it a game at a time -- however it works, it works. We've had a good stretch here. Now we've got a couple more games to end strong."
San Antonio learned earlier in the day that guard Manu Ginobili (oblique) and forward Tiago Splitter (calf) were expected to miss the next two weeks with injuries. The team is on its longest overall winning streak since a 12-game run from Nov. 1 - 24, 2010. The Spurs own an impressive 17-7 mark against the West and are 14-5 during a stretch of 16 of 21 games on the road.
The Spurs, who haven't lost as the guest since Jan. 29 in Dallas, last won nine in a row on the road from Jan. 16-Feb. 12, 2006 and will close out the journey Thursday at Denver.
Portland is coming off Monday's 103-92 loss against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center, as LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum both scored 18 points to lead the Blazers, who got 15 points from reserve Jamal Crawford. Marcus Camby scored five points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
"We didn't come out ready to play. I thought we started the All-Star break early," Blazers head coach Nate McMillan said.
The Blazers announced Monday that center Greg Oden will miss the remainder of the season after having microfracture surgery on his left knee. This was the fifth surgery the 7-foot Oden has endured since he was taken by the Blazers with the first pick in the 2007 draft.
Portland is 12-5 at home this season and ended a four-game slide in Rip City with a 97-77 win versus Atlanta on Saturday. It will play four of the next five games as the host.
The Trail Blazers dropped a 99-83 decision at San Antonio on Jan. 13 this season, but have won eight of the past 10 in this series. The Spurs are winless in six straight trips to the Rose City.