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Spurs 98, Magic 84

The SportsXchange

SAN ANTONIO -- With a litany of stars sitting out for both teams, Danny Green and Gary Neal supplied the San Antonio Spurs with a combined for 36 points to lead their team to a 98-84 victory over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday night.

Green led San Antonio (56-19) with 20 points on 7-of-10 shooting, including 4-of-7 from 3-point range. Neal added 16 points, shooting 4-for-8 on 3-pointers, and he added eight rebounds.

Spurs starters Tony Parker (sore left ankle) and Kawhi Leonard (sore left knee) sat out. Tim Duncan played only 13 minutes, probably in anticipation of a big game Thursday against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Jameer Nelson, the Magic's second-leading scorer and starting point guard, was hoping to return from a sprained right ankle, but he didn't play.

The victory was a welcome one for the Spurs, who had dropped their previous two games to the Miami Heat and Memphis Grizzlies by a combined three points. San Antonio pushed its lead back up to 1 1/2 games over the Thunder for the top spot in the Western Conference.

Maurice Harkless led Orlando (19-57) with 18 points and nine rebounds, but he shot just 8-for-21 from the field. Nikola Vucevic added 16 points and 14 rebounds.

Arron Afflalo, who has a strained hamstring, also was out for Orlando, as was Hedo Turkoglu, who is serving a 20-game suspension after testing positive for steroids.

The Magic are hovering near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, only ahead of the Charlotte Bobcats. The Magic are on pace to break the NBA record for the least free-throw attempts, attempting only an average of 16.4 per game. They went to the line nine times against the Spurs, hitting eight.

San Antonio's Manu Ginobili is also out for three to four weeks with a strained hamstring, and DeJuan Blair also was missing due to a stomach virus.

NOTES: In the teams' first meeting, Nov. 28 in Orlando, Neal contributed 19 points and four rebounds as the Spurs won 110-89. ... The Magic have only swept one series against the Spurs, winning both games in 2008-09. ... Magic head coach Jacque Vaughn was a backup point guard for the Spurs from 2006 to 2009 and later an assistant coach with the Spurs. ... Parker has scored double figures in a career-high 56 consecutive games. ... Entering the game, the Spurs had played in five consecutive games that were decided by two points or less. The Spurs lost three of those games. ... The Magic have used 24 starting lineups this season, second most in the NBA. ... Former Spurs draft pick Beno Udrih had averaged 18.5 points and nine assists in two previous starts in place of Nelson. Udrih had 14 points and eight assists Wednesday.
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