March 16, 2019 / 2:57 AM / 3 days ago

Spurs, Aldridge hammer Knicks, get rest for Blazers

EditorsNote: 7th graf, take out extraneous word ‘in’; handful of smaller tweaks elsewhere

Mar 15, 2019; San Antonio, TX, USA; New York Knicks small forward Lance Thomas (42) dunks over San Antonio Spurs center Jakob Poeltl (right) during the first half at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

LaMarcus Aldridge scored 18 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in three quarters to lead a balanced San Antonio scoring attack as the Spurs throttled the visiting New York Knicks 109-83 on Friday to capture their seventh straight victory.

The Spurs (40-29) have used their winning streak to fly up in the Western Conference standings and to move 11 games above .500, their best mark of the season.

San Antonio posted its ninth consecutive victory at home and dominated hapless New York, which has the NBA’s worst record at 13-56 and has lost eight games in a row.

DeMar DeRozan and Bryn Forbes added 13 points each for the Spurs, with Jakob Poeltl, Marco Belinelli and Rudy Gay hitting for 12 points apiece.

Damyean Dotson led the Knicks with 21 points, while Kadeem Allen added 16, Emmanuel Mudiay hit for 14 points, and DeAndre Jordan scored 11 points and pulled down 13 rebounds.

San Antonio led by just nine points with 2:55 to play in the third quarter, but reeled off 12 of the game’s next 14 points — including the first six points of the fourth quarter — to go up 88-69 and put the Knicks away.

The Spurs were in charge all night, leading the entire game save for the opening minutes before fashioning a 31-20 advantage after the first quarter.

San Antonio built that margin to 56-41 at intermission as DeRozan led the Spurs with 11 points at halftime, while Aldridge added 10 points and seven rebounds in the first half.

The Knicks were led by Allen’s 11 points in the half, with Jordan taking eight boards.

San Antonio pushed its lead to 16 points at 68-52 after a free throw by Derrick White with 6:32 to play in the third quarter. The Knicks then made a bid to get back into the game, cutting the margin to 76-67 on Mitchell Robinson’s free throw with 2:55 to go in the third.

The Spurs answered with a 3-pointer by Gay and a three-point play from Belinelli and took an 82-69 lead into the final quarter.

The Spurs were able to rest most of their starters for the entirety of the fourth quarter in preparation for the second game of a home back-to-back on Saturday against Portland.

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