The San Antonio Spurs are finding consistency, something they’ve had plenty of the last six years against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Tim Duncan has been a big reason for that this season.
After being named to his 15th All-Star game, Duncan will try to keep the Spurs surging by continuing their home dominance of the Clippers on Saturday night.
San Antonio (30-17) has won 11 of 14 games after losing nine of the previous 13 while giving up an average of 106.2 points. The Spurs are yielding just 93.3 per game and 31.2 percent shooting from beyond the arc during their current surge.
They turned in another strong defensive performance Wednesday, limiting Charlotte to 41.0 percent from the floor while coasting to a 95-86 win.
Duncan had 12 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks against the Hornets, three days after getting 20, 11 and three in a 101-95 win over Milwaukee. The 38-year-old is second on San Antonio with 14.7 points per game and is averaging a team-high 10.1 rebounds, his most since finishing with that mark in 2009-10.
His impressive season earned him a spot in next month’s All-Star game in New York.
"Pretty special. Obviously, I’m happy for him," coach Gregg Popovich said. "He’s having a good year. We’ve been a little bit up and down, but he’s been really steady. He’s carried us to this point with his consistency, which is what’s really impressive.
"I’m really thankful to the coaches for seeing that and putting him on. He’s a special guy and it’s great for his legacy."
Popovich is also adding to his, entering this game three wins shy of 1,000.
"We’re all reaching all these milestones. It just means we’ve been around for a long time," Duncan said.
Duncan could get Popovich closer to his if he can turn in another strong performance against the Clippers (32-15). He’s totaled 39 points and 23 boards in two previous wins this season.
Tony Parker helped out in the latest matchup Dec. 22, scoring 26 points while shooting 11 for 18 in a 125-118 home victory.
The Spurs have dominated Los Angeles at home, winning 31 of 34 meetings – including the playoffs – and 22 of 27 overall.
The Clippers are in search of a bounce-back performance after their six-game winning streak ended with a 108-103 loss at New Orleans on Friday.
"They pushed us around," forward Blake Griffin said. "They played how they wanted to play. We came out and didn’t play with any energy and didn’t play with any passion. We were just bad all around."
Griffin may be looking for improvement of his own – he’s averaging 16.7 points and 6.7 rebounds while shooting 41.7 percent from the field over the past three games. He had been scoring 26.6 points per game on 62.2 percent shooting with 7.4 rebounds per contest over his previous five.
Griffin is averaging 26.7 points and 9.3 rebounds over the past three meetings with the Spurs, but he’s averaged just 18.0 points in his last five visits to San Antonio.
Chris Paul will join Griffin and Duncan on the Western Conference All-Star team, and he had 25 points and nine assists at AT&T Center in December.
Paul has averaged 20.8 points on 55.2 percent shooting and 8.3 assists in his last four games.