Spurs 120, Knicks 89

Everett Merrill, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

NEW YORK -- The San Antonio Spurs shot a season-best 54 percent from the floor en route to a 120-89 win over the New York Knicks Sunday afternoon at Madison Square Garden.
The Spurs (6-1), running their patented pick-and-roll offense, made a season-high 12 shots from beyond the arc in claiming their fourth straight win. Their previous 3-point high was 11 against the Memphis Grizzlies on Oct. 30.
Small forward Danny Green led the long-range barrage, making six of his nine 3-pointers in leading San Antonio with 24 points. Guard Tony Parker contributed 17 points and six assists.
Forward Kawhi Leonard scored 18 points off the Spurs' bench.
Forward Carmelo Anthony and center Andrea Bargnani topped the Knicks (3-3) with 16 points apiece.
The Knicks were without center Tyson Chandler for the second straight game. He is expected to miss four to six weeks with a non-displaced fracture of the right fibula.
New York did receive a bit of welcome news with the return of guard J.R. Smith. The reigning Sixth Man of the Year was suspended for the season's first five games for violating the NBA's anti-drug program. Smith was New York's second-leading scorer last season at 18.1 points per game and averaged 33.5 minutes.
Smith made his debut with 7:02 remaining in the first quarter. He looked rusty, committing four turnovers and making just one of his nine shots in 20:33.
Green scored 13 points, nine from beyond the arc, in the third quarter when the Spurs pulled away 90-60.
By halftime, three Spurs players had already scored in double figures. Parker (12), Leonard (12) and Green (11) combined for 35 points in San Antonio's 61-45 lead. It was the most points San Antonio scored in the first half this season.
The Spurs scored their most points in the first quarter this season, grabbing a 35-17 advantage while shooting 72 percent (13 of 18) from the field.
San Antonio was quick out of the gate, taking an early 21-4 lead with 5:51 left in the first quarter. Parker accumulated eight of those points as the Knicks missed their first five shots.
Notes: Knicks F Carmelo Anthony has scored 60 points over the last two games after totaling 63 through the first three. ... Knicks C Cole Aldrich saw his most significant playing time of the season, scoring two points in eight minutes. ...Spurs G Matt Bonner missed his third straight game due to tightness in his left calf. ... The Spurs are one of three teams, joining the Miami Heat and Denver Nuggets, to not have a rookie on their opening-night roster. ... G Tony Parker and F Tim Duncan have played 822 games together, the most of any current teammates.

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