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West powers collide as Blazers visit Spurs

(SportsNetwork.com) - Two of the NBA's most elite powerhouses battle it out Friday night when the San Antonio Spurs host the Portland Trail Blazers at AT&T Center.

The Spurs head into Friday's contest with the second-best record in the league and the best mark in the Western Conference. Portland is just 1 1/2 games behind the Spurs and both squads are chasing the Indiana Pacers for the best record in basketball.

Both teams head into the contest on highs. San Antonio has won six straight games for the best active winning streak and Portland has emerged victorious in three consecutive outings.

The Spurs streak is slightly more impressive, not just because of the length. Since a disappointing home loss to the New York Knicks on Jan. 2, two of the Spurs wins came on the road and they beat the Clippers, Grizzlies and Mavericks during that stretch.

The Blazers' three consecutive victories all came at home against lesser foes like the Orlando Magic, Boston Celtics and Cleveland Cavaliers, and none of the wins were by double-figures.

Portland has some tough sledding ahead as the Blazers embark on a four-game road trip with stops in Dallas, Houston and Oklahoma City.

"I don't think it's a test, I think it's an opportunity to prove ourselves," Blazers guard Damian Lillard said of the trip. "It would be a tough trip for any team in the league, so we have a chance to go out there and steal some games so it should be fun."

The Spurs haven't been in a giving mood of late. During this win streak, San Antonio has held opponents to 96 points per game.

On Wednesday, the Spurs weren't great down the stretch, but held on for a 109-105 home victory over the Utah Jazz.

Tony Parker had 25 points and nine assists, while Tim Duncan, Kawhi Leonard and Marco Belinelli scored 15 points apiece for the Spurs. Belinelli made four straight free throws down the stretch to help San Antonio remain in front as Utah cut a 14-point Spurs lead to two in the last three minutes.

Parker was instrumental in getting the big lead that San Antonio needed. He scored 12 in the third quarter, where the Spurs built a 12-point lead.

"He pulled us through it again," Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said about Parker. "I thought in the third quarter Timmy (Duncan), he and Manu (Ginobili) all played really well and got the lead for us."

LaMarcus Aldridge had 32 points and 18 rebounds to carry the Trail Blazers to a 108-96 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday.

The score was tied 96-96 when Aldridge put the team on his back with a personal 6-0 run. Wesley Matthews and Damian Lillard followed with 3- pointers to seal the outcome.

"I was very pleased with our defense, for the most part throughout the game but particularly in the fourth quarter," Portland head coach Terry Stotts said. "We did a nice job of protecting the rim and forcing mid-range shots."

Lillard netted 28 points, Matthews added 15 and Nicolas Batum registered seven points, nine rebounds and six assists in the Blazers' win.

The Blazers won this season's only meeting with San Antonio, a 115-105 triumph, at home, on Nov. 2. That was their third consecutive victory over the Spurs, but Portland is just 4-14 in its last 18 in San Antonio.

01/17 10:20:38 ET

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Schedule

Wednesday, April 16Full Scoreboard
Chicago 4/16 7:00 PM ET
Charlotte CSN-CHI, SportSouth
Indiana 4/16 7:00 PM ET
Orlando FSN-IN, FSN-FL
Washington 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Boston CSN-DC, CSN-NE
Brooklyn 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Cleveland YES, FSN-OH
Dallas 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Memphis FSN-SW, SportSouth, ESPN
Philadelphia 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Miami CSN-PHI, SunSports
Atlanta 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Milwaukee SportSouth, FSN-WIS
Utah 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Minnesota ROOT-RM, FSN-N
Houston 4/16 8:00 PM ET
New Orleans CSN-HOU, FSN-NO
Toronto 4/16 8:00 PM ET
New York Sportsnet 360, MSG
Detroit 4/16 8:00 PM ET
Oklahoma City FSN-DET, FSN-OK
LA Lakers 4/16 8:00 PM ET
San Antonio TWC SN, FSN-SW
Golden State 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Denver ESPN, CSN-BA+, Altitude
LA Clippers 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Portland FSN-PT, KGW
Phoenix 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Sacramento FSN-AZ, CSN-CA
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Toronto 48 33 .593 --- 26-15 22-18 32-19 W 2
x-Brooklyn 44 37 .543 4 28-13 16-24 26-25 L 1
New York 36 45 .444 12 18-22 18-23 25-26 W 3
Boston 25 56 .309 23 16-24 9-32 21-30 L 1
Philadelphia 18 63 .222 30 10-31 8-32 13-38 W 1
 
Central W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Indiana 55 26 .679 --- 35-6 20-20 37-14 W 1
x-Chicago 48 33 .593 7 27-14 21-19 35-16 W 1
Cleveland 32 49 .395 23 18-22 14-27 20-31 L 2
Detroit 29 52 .358 26 17-24 12-28 23-29 L 3
Milwaukee 15 66 .185 40 10-30 5-36 12-39 L 2
 
Southeast W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Miami 54 27 .667 --- 32-8 22-19 34-17 L 2
x-Washington 43 38 .531 11 22-19 21-19 32-19 W 3
x-Charlotte 42 39 .519 12 24-16 18-23 29-22 W 2
x-Atlanta 37 44 .457 17 24-17 13-27 27-24 L 1
Orlando 23 58 .284 31 19-21 4-37 17-34 L 3
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
2013 - 2014 Western Conference Standings
 
Northwest W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Oklahoma City 58 23 .716 --- 33-7 25-16 36-16 L 2
x-Portland 53 28 .654 5 30-10 23-18 30-21 W 4
Minnesota 40 41 .494 18 24-16 16-25 23-28 L 2
Denver 36 45 .444 22 22-18 14-27 20-31 L 1
Utah 24 57 .296 34 16-25 8-32 12-39 L 5
 
Pacific W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-LA Clippers 57 24 .704 --- 34-7 23-17 36-15 W 2
x-Golden State 50 31 .617 7 27-14 23-17 30-21 W 1
Phoenix 47 34 .580 10 26-15 21-19 27-24 L 3
Sacramento 28 53 .346 29 17-23 11-30 15-36 W 1
LA Lakers 26 55 .321 31 14-27 12-28 14-37 W 1
 
Southwest W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-San Antonio 62 19 .765 --- 32-8 30-11 38-13 L 1
x-Houston 54 27 .667 8 33-8 21-19 31-20 W 2
x-Dallas 49 32 .605 13 26-15 23-17 29-22 W 1
x-Memphis 49 32 .605 13 26-14 23-18 28-23 W 4
New Orleans 33 48 .407 29 21-19 12-29 14-37 W 1
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
  • NASL: RailHawks vs. Ft. Lauderdale

    Saturday at 7:30 am on WRAL-2

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Canes head coach Kirk Muller presser

    Today at 11:00 am on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR
 
7:05pm Tuesday
PHI 0
ATL 0
7:05pm Tuesday
NYY 0
CHC 0
7:05pm Tuesday
BAL 0
TAM 0
7:08pm Tuesday
DET 0
CLE 0
Final
CIN 7
PIT 5
Final
MIA 11
WAS 2
Final
TEX 5
SEA 0
Final
CWS 2
BOS 1
Final
HOU 2
KAN 4
Final
MIL 1
STL 6
Final
MIN 3
TOR 9
Final
ARI 0
NYM 9
Final
ANA 9
OAK 10
Final
SDP 2
COL 3
Final
SFG 3
LOS 2
12:35pm Today
CIN
PIT
12:35pm Today
BAL
TAM
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
CHC
 
1:10pm Today
MIL
STL
 
3:40pm Today
ARI
NYM
 
7:05pm Tonight
PHI
ATL
 
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
CHC
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CLE
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
WAS
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
SEA
 
8:10pm Tonight
CWS
BOS
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
KAN
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
TOR
 
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
OAK
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
COL
 
10:15pm Tonight
SFG
LOS
 
Final
BRK 98
NYK 109
Final
LAC 117
DEN 105
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
IND
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
ATL
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLE
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
HOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
LAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIA
PHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
NYK
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
BOS
WAS
 
10:30pm Tonight
DEN
GSW
 
10:30pm Tonight
POR
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
SAC
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
TAM
MON
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
CLB
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
DAL
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR