Spurs seek road success in NOLA
San Antonio's struggles on the road this season have been well documented and the team hopes to change that perspective tonight against the New Orleans Hornets in the Big Easy.
The Spurs are just 1-6 away from the Alamo City this season and suffered a 105-102 loss at Houston on Saturday despite a career-high 25 points and 10 rebounds from reserve Tiago Splitter. Tony Parker added 24 points and a season-high 13 assists, while Matt Bonner added 16 points for the Spurs, who have lost two straight and three of four games.
"Houston is a good basketball team. They're talented, they're deep and they are physical," Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said. "Their big guys are working hard and their roll players are doing a good job."
Tim Duncan (rest) did not play against the Rockets and could return to the lineup tonight. He leads the team with five double-doubles. The Spurs are currently in the midst of playing 16 of 21 games on the road.
New Orleans has completely folded since winning its first two games of the season and is just 3-13 on the year. It has dropped seven in a row, including Saturday's 83-81 home loss versus the Dallas Mavericks.
Emeka Okafor had 16 points and 17 rebounds and Carl Landry netted 19 points for the Hornets, who are playing two straight and four of five games in the Big Easy.
"We had a chance. A play here and there, it's pretty much the same story," said New Orleans forward Trevor Ariza, who ended with 12 points and six rebounds. "We were right there and then a turnover happens and then a miss, rebound or something. We're just not closing games out the way we know we can. That's the story of our season so far."
Jarrett Jack compiled 12 points, six assists and four boards in defeat. The Hornets have lost their last eight games as the host and are 1-8 at home. New Orleans is averaging a league-worst 85.1 points on the bayou this season.
The Hornets and Spurs split four meetings a season ago, but San Antonio has won seven of the last nine matchups between the teams. The Spurs are 12-5 in the previous 17 trips to New Orleans.