Saturday, November 08, 2008
Sports NewsMayfield's Mutterings: A 'Wicked' weekend

Parker injured in Spurs' loss to Miami

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[November 08, 2008]  SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- Tony Parker sprained his left ankle and could be out two weeks, and the Miami Heat took advantage of his absence to beat the San Antonio Spurs 99-83 on Friday night.

Auto RepairDwyane Wade had 33 points and 10 rebounds with the NBA's leading scorer out of the game. The Spurs dropped to 1-4, their worst start since 1996-97 - a favorably miserable season that gave San Antonio the No. 1 pick and the right to draft Tim Duncan.

Parker sustained a moderate lateral ankle sprain and will probably be out more than two weeks, said Dr. Paul Saenz, a team physician. An MRI was expected to be performed Saturday.

Duncan, already burdened with having to provide more offense with Manu Ginobili still sidelined, scored 22 points and had 11 rebounds.

Michael Beasley scored 20 points for Miami, which won in San Antonio for the first time since 1996 and got its first road victory of the season. Wade also had nine assists.

Beasley also left the game briefly with what the Heat described as a left shin contusion, but the rookie forward from Kansas State later returned to the bench. X-rays were negative.


But mostly, it was Parker's absence that made the Heat's night easier.

Coming off a dazzling 55-point game at Minnesota on Wednesday, Parker's encore didn't last 10 minutes. And without their leading scorer, the Spurs couldn't keep up with Miami.

During one timeout, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was heard lamenting to his players, "This is a bad performance. I don't understand what I'm watching. This is our fifth game, and I've got guys standing around."

Parker rolled his left ankle with 2:06 left in the first quarter on a drive to the basket, missing the shot before crouching and wincing over on the baseline. He got up, limped a few steps behind the basket and then gently bent down again.

The Spurs said X-rays on Parker were negative.

But his absence, for whatever length of time, leaves an irreplaceable void. The Spurs have already sputtered without Ginobili, the other member of the "Big Three" along with Duncan.

Ginobili, who was San Antonio's leading scorer last season, is still recovering from ankle surgery this offseason and is not expected back until next month at the earliest.

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Without Ginobili, the Spurs have leaned almost exclusively on Parker and Duncan for offense. The duo has been responsible for 59 percent of San Antonio's scoring entering Friday's game, and had taken 55 percent of the team's shots.

Parker was 2-of-5 from the field and scored four points before leaving the game. He entered Friday leading the league in scoring at 33.3 points a game.

Even before Parker went down, the Spurs were struggling to keep up. Miami led 24-9 when the eight-year veteran went down, then really started the makings of a blowout, going up by as much as 24 in the third quarter.

San Antonio rallied and cut the deficit to 89-80 with 1:47 left, but Deaquan Cook hit a 3-pointer to silence the crowd and send many to the exits.

Udonis Haslem and Chris Quinn scored 15 points for Miami. Wade shot 14-of-25 from the floor in 36 minutes.

Notes:@ Miami committed just eight turnovers and thrived at the foul line, making 20 of 22 free throws. ... In the season before the Spurs drafted Duncan, San Antonio started 1-5. When the team slummed to 3-15, then-general manager Popovich fired coach Bob Hill and replaced him on the bench.

[Associated Press; By PAUL J. WEBER]

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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