The Brooklyn Nets took advantage of a matchup with a short-handed team to end a lengthy skid, but they will likely have a much tougher challenge attempting to string together back-to-back wins.
The Nets will visit the surging San Antonio Spurs, who seek a season-high fourth consecutive victory Saturday night by extending their recent dominance in the series.
Brooklyn (5-7) used Jarrett Jack’s season high-tying 23 points off the bench Friday to hold on for a 94-92 win over an Oklahoma City team that’s struggling without superstars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Brook Lopez recorded his first double-double of the campaign (16 points, 10 rebounds) to end a five-game skid and a three-game road losing streak.
"We came in with the mindset we were going to win, and even when we were behind, we stuck together and pushed through," Lopez said. "I think there was just a lot of effort."
The Spurs easily handled a depleted Minnesota squad 121-92 on Friday, and Tony Parker also tied his season high with 28 points in his team’s sixth win in seven games. The Spurs point guard made 12 of 18 shots and went 3-for-3 from 3-point range, where he’s shooting 68.4 percent (13 of 19) this season.
Only one of the Spurs’ starters played more than 27 minutes, allowing the team some needed rest before its sixth game in nine nights.
"With our team we have a lot of veterans that need rest for the back-to-back"’ Parker said. "So our mindset was to be focused from the get-go and make sure we can rest the guys in the second half."
San Antonio (8-4) will try to keep rolling with its 12th straight regular-season home win over Brooklyn and 21st in the last 23 overall between the teams, but it had a six-game win streak in the series snapped Feb. 6 with a 103-89 road defeat. The Spurs have won 39 of 44 home matchups, including two in three games in the 2003 NBA finals, since both franchises came over from the ABA in 1976.
The Spurs took a 113-92 victory in Brooklyn’s last visit on Dec. 31, and they have won their past two by a combined 52 points.
Parker totaled 38 points in those victories and is averaging 22.3 while shooting 61.0 percent (25 of 41) in his last three overall meetings.
The Spurs might not have much depth at point guard beyond Parker with Cory Joseph not playing in the second half Friday because of an apparent ankle injury. Coach Gregg Popovich said Joseph was doubtful for Saturday, and San Antonio is already missing Patty Mills, who had offseason shoulder injury.
Tiago Splitter (calf) and Matt Bonner (illness) also missed Friday’s game.
Nets reserve Alan Anderson has averaged 15.7 points on 50.0 percent shooting in his last three games against San Antonio and scored 19 of his team-best 22 in the second half of the victory in February. He’s averaged 8.3 points against all other opponents in the past two-plus seasons and is averaging a career-low 4.3 in 12 games in 2014-15.