Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 12/28

Game 1: Saturday, December 28th
Game 2: Sunday, March 16th

Bulls 97

(23-45, 3-33 away)

Spurs 108


    Coverage: FSSW

    6:00 PM ET, March 16, 2003

    AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

    1 2 3 4 T
    CHI 28 19 26 2497
    SA 26 33 17 32108

    Top Performers

    Chicago: D. Marshall 29 Pts, 10 Reb, 1 Ast, 2 Stl, 2 Blk

    San Antonio: T. Duncan 22 Pts, 12 Reb, 2 Ast, 4 Blk

    Parker, Duncan help Spurs win sixth straight

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- The San Antonio Spurs' sixth consecutive victory came with a twist -- potentially a costly one.

    Tim Duncan

    Tim Duncan was forced to leave the game after injuring his ankle late in the fourth quarter.

    Tim Duncan sprained his right ankle with about three minutes left in San Antonio's 108-97 victory over Chicago. Duncan scored 22 points and had a game-high 12 rebounds.

    An X-ray of the ankle was negative. Team officials said Duncan will undergo an MRI on Monday to determine the extent of the injury.

    ''He did it pretty good,'' Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. ''He's walking gingerly.''

    San Antonio's next game is Tuesday at home against New York, and two days later, the team has a crucial road matchup with Midwest Division-leading Dallas.

    After Duncan was helped off the floor by teammates, point guard Tony Parker stepped into the scoring void. Parker made a 3-pointer on San Antonio's next possession and a pair of free throws to extend the Spurs' lead to 15.

    ''He has been solid all year, but really gave an extra effort down the stretch,'' Spurs forward Bruce Bowen.

    Parker finished with 25 points, while Malik Rose scored 19 and Stephen Jackson 15 for the Spurs, who have won 19 of their last 22 games. The team set a season-high with 17 steals.

    Chicago, down 12 at halftime, made a strong run in the third quarter behind Jamal Crawford's 13 points in the period. Crawford, who had 21 points on the night, went 3-for-3 on 3-pointers in the quarter, which ended with the Spurs clinging to a 76-73 lead.

    Steve Kerr connected on 3-pointers on consecutive possessions early in the fourth, and Steve Smith followed with another 3-pointer to build San Antonio's lead to 89-80 with nine minutes left. A three-point play by Duncan made it a 13-point margin with 7:31 left.

    ''When we shut down the inside, they'd go outside,'' said Chicago forward Donyell Marshall, who led all scorers with 29. ''When we shut down the outside, they went inside. That makes them hard to defend.''

    Bulls coach Bill Cartwright said his youth-filled team, which has lost seven of its past nine games, also hurt itself on the offensive end with turnovers and poor shooting down the stretch -- Chicago managed only 6-for-20 in the final period.

    ''Our ability to handle pressure and play with poise is something we need to work on,'' Cartwright said. ''That's the difference between young players and veterans.''

    Jalen Rose, who turned in his third consecutive subpar performance, was tossed from the game after picking up two technical fouls in the final seconds. He finished with 12 points, about half his season average, on 4-for-24 shooting.

    Rose's first technical came when he jostled with Bowen after Bowen committed a hard foul on him with 11 seconds left.

    ''I felt like he unnecessarily tried to trip me,'' said Rose, who picked up the second technical moments later for taunting Bowen on the San Antonio bench. ''It all just happened so fast I don't really know for sure what happened.''

    The Bulls came out shooting well, making nine of their first 14 attempts, and led for most of the first quarter.

    San Antonio had trouble handling the ball early, committing four turnovers in the first six minutes. The Spurs also played most of the period without Duncan, who went to the bench after picking up his second personal at 7:52.

    Chicago had its largest lead, 28-19, late in the first when its offense stalled. A 5-foot jumper by Malik Rose started a 17-2 run by the Spurs. Rose scored nine points in the second period, and Duncan added eight after returning to the game.

    The Bulls, who shot only 8-for-22 in the second, fell behind by as many as 15 before trimming San Antonio's lead to 59-47 at the break on a buzzer-beating putback by Tyson Chandler.

    Game notes

    Manu Ginobili, the Spurs' rookie backup shooting guard, did not play. He bruised his ribs in the victory Friday over the Los Angeles Clippers. ... The Spurs are 12-0 at home against Eastern Conference teams, while the Bulls are 0-13 on the road against Western Conference opponents. ... David Robinson missed his fifth consecutive game with a lower-back injury. ... Rose came into the game averaging 23 points for the season, but has averaged only 13 points in the past three games.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 97 108
    FGM-FGA 36-83 (.434) 37-74 (.500)
    3PM-3PA 8-20 (.400) 8-25 (.320)
    FTM-FTA 17-25 (.680) 26-34 (.765)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 15-42 9-39
    Assists 19 26
    Turnovers 24 19
    Steals 10 17
    Blocks 3 7
    Fast Break Points 2 9
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 27 (3/0) 18 (1/1)

    Top Performers

    San Antonio
    Donyell Marshall Marshall
    Points: 29
    Reb: 10
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 2
    Tim Duncan Duncan
    Points: 22
    Reb: 12
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 4