Spurs take on rival Rockets in Space City

A pair of Southwest Division rivals will renew their bitterness for each other when the unbeaten San Antonio Spurs take on the Houston Rockets Thursday night from the Toyota Center.

The 2-0 Spurs haven't won three in a row to start a season since the 2007-08 campaign and are coming off last night's 115-90 blowout of the Los Angeles Clippers in the Alamo City. Manu Ginobili scored 24 points and dished out six assists, while DeJuan Blair added 20 points and Richard Jefferson chipped in 19 for San Antonio, which got 10 points and eight rebounds from Tim Duncan.

"We shot better and defended well," Duncan said. "All in all, we're pleased with where we're at."

San Antonio had a 43-30 advantage on the glass and shot a sizzling 56.3 percent from the floor. Tony Parker added 14 points and nine assists for the Spurs, who will play two of their next three games on the road after opening the new season with back-to-back victories at the AT&T Center.

The Rockets lost their season opener by a 104-95 score on Monday in Orlando and will open its home schedule tonight with a visit from the Spurs.

In the loss to the Magic, Kyle Lowry led the Rockets with 20 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds. Luis Scola added 19 points and seven boards for Houston, which got 15 points off the bench from Courtney Lee. Samuel Dalembert, who officially signed with Houston on Monday, registered 10 points, five rebounds and three blocks.

"I didn't think I'd be playing Samuel Dalembert 20 minutes that game," said Kevin McHale after his debut as Rockets head coach.

Houston will play two of its next three games in Space City and shot 43.9 percent from the field against the Magic. It is 22-23 all-time in season openers and just 8-18 when starting a season on the road.

The Rockets lost three of four meetings with San Antonio last season, while the Spurs are 10-7 in the previous 17 encounters. These two rivals have split the past 14 games at the Toyota Center.