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Spurs 111, Mavericks 86

The SportsXchange

DALLAS -- San Antonio didn't humiliate the Dallas Mavericks this time out, but the Spurs did net another sound victory over their instate rivals. Tony Parker scored 21 points as San Antonio took care of the Mavericks 111-86 Sunday night at American Airlines Center.

Southwest Division-leading San Antonio (24-8) will take a five-game winning streak going into a New Year's Eve date with Brooklyn at AT&T Center. Dallas (12-19) has lost six straight and hasn't been seven games under .500 since the 1999-2000 season.

The Spurs led from start to finish, and though it didn't come close to the 38-point demolition last week in San Antonio, the outcome was never in doubt. The lead reached 10 just minutes into the game and exceeded 20 in the fourth quarter.

In between, the Spurs were in control. Manu Ginobili added 20 points, Tim Duncan scored 18 and Tiago Splitter had 13. San Antonio shot 50.6 percent and hit eight 3-pointers. (The Spurs nailed a team-record 20 3-pointers in last week's 129-91 rout.)

Dallas hasn't won since beating Philadelphia on Dec. 18. Darren Collison led the Mavericks with 18 points. Vince Carter and Chris Kaman scored 13 each. Dirk Nowitzki had eight on 3-for-9 shooting off the bench.

The Spurs established their dominance early, toying with Dallas in the early minutes and opening a double-figure lead. San Antonio was up 20-8 when Nowitzki first checked into the game.

Parker had 10 points in the first quarter alone. The Mavericks did make a charge with their second team, as Elton Brand scored six off the bench, cutting San Antonio's lead to 27-22 going into the second period.

The Mavericks closed the gap more in the second before Duncan and Splitter caught fire. San Antonio's advantage ballooned to 57-45 at the half.

NOTES: Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said he hasn't been given any directive from the league on the proper procedures for giving players games off. The Spurs were fined $250,000 for sending Duncan, Ginobili and Parker home before a game at Miami earlier this season. "I don't know how you plan," Popovich said. "I'm just going to do what I've been doing for ... 16, 17 years. I'm mostly concerned with the health and safety of my players, especially the ones who are a little bit older. When they need rest I'm going to give it to them." ... San Antonio is leading the Southwest Division and beat the Mavericks by 38 a week prior to Sunday's meeting. "They're doing everything well," Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. "They're defending, they're taking care of the ball, they're shooting good. They're one of those top teams, one of those handful that's right there. It's challenging to play them." ... Parker has been given a warning about flopping. "Referees can be fooled," Popovich said. "What the league is doing will probably, will hopefully diminish flopping a little bit because players are more aware of it." ... Nowitzki came off the bench for the fourth straight game. ... Spurs guard Gary Neal (calf) missed his third game in a row.

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