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Battered Kings top Spurs

©Associated Press
December 9, 2002

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- The Spurs might have fared better against the Kings on Sunday if they had a pair of Jacksons. And some steals. And their coach all four quarters.

The Kings had all the former and won 104-80 in their first game at the SBC Center.

The victory was the sixth straight for Sacramento, which leads the Pacific Division.

Jim Jackson scored 23 off the bench and Bobby Jackson added 18 points for the Kings. Chris Webber finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds. Doug Christie tied the team record with eight steals.

Christie said having so many injured teammates -- Sacramento had eight in uniform -- helped the Kings keep their focus.

"Sometimes when you got a lot of people, there's a tendency, myself included, to lay back," he said. "When you don't have the people, you got to play hard."

Sacramento tied a league record by turning the ball over only three times.

San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was ejected at halftime after picking up his second technical. Assistant P.J. Carlesimo took over in the second half, when a six-point Kings lead grew to more than 20 early in the fourth. Tim Duncan paced San Antonio with 16 points and 13 rebounds.

LAKERS 110, JAZZ 101: Shaquille O'Neal had 32 points and 11 rebounds as host Los Angeles posted consecutive wins for the first time in two weeks. Kobe Bryant had 25 points and 14 assists and showed no ill effects from a pulled groin.

Bryant punctuated the win with a driving dunk with four seconds left. O'Neal was on, scoring 16 in the first quarter. It was his most productive outing since returning from foot surgery Nov. 22.

Andrei Kirilenko scored a career-high 30 and made all 10 of his free throws for the Jazz, who had won nine of the past 10.

Utah center Greg Ostertag was ejected two minutes into the game for arguing after he and O'Neal got tied up. He left the court kicking and screaming.

GRIZZLIES 102, SUNS 94: With three of five starters injured, host Memphis still had enough to end a five-game losing streak. The remaining Grizzlies clicked well enough on offense to shoot 54 percent, overcoming 31 turnovers.

"It's just being patient, running plays all the way through and playing together," center Lorenzen Wright said.

Pau Gasol had 21 points and 17 rebounds to lead Memphis. The short-handed Grizzlies played without injured starters Jason Williams and Shane Battier, and rookie Drew Gooden played only 19 minutes because of a bruised knee.

Stephon Marbury led the Suns with 35 points and seven assists.

TRAIL BLAZERS 104, RAPTORS 91: Bonzi Wells scored a season-high 29 and Rasheed Wallace added 20 to lead visiting Portland. The injury-plagued Raptors, who have lost nine of 12, were without Antonio Davis (swollen right knee). Davis does not expect to travel to Cleveland on Wednesday night.

Vince Carter scored 25 for the Raptors, but he was not on the court when the Blazers pulled away, bridging the third and fourth quarters with a 16-4 run.

PACERS: Coach Isiah Thomas was ticketed about 3:30 a.m. for failing to obey an officer after returning from Saturday's game in Denver. A sergeant from the Marion (Ind.) County Sheriff's Department saw him driving in a lane that was closed after a traffic accident.

When the officer asked to see his driver's license, Thomas refused, was removed from his car and briefly handcuffed, said deputy chief Joseph McAtee. Thomas refused to take the ticket, so officers placed it and his wallet inside his car, McAtee said.

Thomas said he was worried about the wreck.

"It was a tense situation," Thomas said in a statement issued by the team. "The police were worried one of their fellow officers was hurt. And I was thinking it could be one of my players."

Responded McAtee: "If he would have told them when he was stopped, it would have made a big difference. No officers said he indicated that to them at all."

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