The San Antonio Spurs opened their annual Rodeo Road Trip on a high note, beating the Memphis Grizzlies 89-84 for the third time this season and tightened their grip on their Southwest Division lead.
The Grizzlies made a surging comeback in third period outscoring the Spurs 27-15 in the quarter to take a lead 73-67 entering the fourth quarter.
However, the Spurs had Tim Duncan.
The 35 year-old forward, who was once a two time league MVP reminded everyone that there is still plenty left in his tank.
Duncan scored 13 of 19 his points in the second half, nine coming in the fourth quarter, including a dunk that gave the Spurs an 87-81 lead with 1:17 left in the game.
The Big Fundamental almost willed the Spurs to victory, as he did everything he could to help his team start the nine-game road trip with a win.
Duncan had two key blocks in the closing minute as the Spurs clung to an 87-84 lead. He first blocked Rudy Gay’s layup attempt with 32 seconds left and followed with a block of Marc Gasol’s close-range attempt 10 seconds later.
Duncan finished with 19 points, 17 rebounds, five blocks, three assists and two steals in 32 minutes of action and shot 9-of-14 from the floor.
Tony Parker had a game-high 21 points and seven assists for the Spurs while Tiago Splitter came off the bench and provided the spark for San Antonio scoring 14 points and grabbing six rebounds in 20 minutes of play.
Gasol scored 22 points to lead Memphis, Mike Conley scored 19 and Gay had 18 for the Grizzlies.
San Antonio outscored Memphis 22-11 in the fourth period and held the Grizzlies to just 37.3 percent field goal shooting for the game. The 11 points is a season low for a single quarter.
The Spurs will continue their road trip on Wednesday night when they visit one of the East top teams, the Philadelphia 76ers.