Mohammed matched a career high with 30 points and had 16
rebounds to lead San Antonio to a 108-102 victory over Phoenix on
"Nazr was stupendous," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said.
Mohammed hit four shots and grabbed six rebounds in the first
quarter. He already had a double-double 5:26 into the second
"I'm the type of guy who is always thinking about the mistakes
I made, so I just went out there early and got a good start,"
Mohammed also was the difference in the fourth quarter. He was
5-for-6 from the field in the period, including making a running
hook shot from about four feet with a minute left that gave the
Spurs a 104-100 lead.
"The Spurs hit big shots and got the win," Suns coach Mike
D'Antoni said. "Mohammed was really solid down the stretch. We
couldn't stop him."
The last time Mohammed scored 30 points was on Nov. 5, 2001
while he was playing for the Atlanta Hawks.
San Antonio acquired Mohammed last season in a deal just before
the trading deadline. The Spurs sent two first-round draft picks
and Malik Rose, a key bench player during their first two NBA
titles in 1999 and 2003, to the New York Knicks.
Mohammed replaced Rasho Nesterovic as the starting center before
last season's playoffs. Nesterovic began this season as the
starter, but San Antonio is 11-2 this season after putting Mohammed
back in the starting lineup.
San Antonio (51-14) has won three straight and remained a half
game behind Dallas in the chase for the top record in the Southwest
Division and the Western Conference. The Mavericks (52-14) defeated
Washington 104-94 Friday.
Steve Nash scored 30 points to lead Phoenix (45-20), which had a
two-game winning streak stopped. Shawn Marion had 22 points and 12
The loss marked the first time the Suns, the highest scoring
team in the league, have surpassed 100 points against the Spurs
this season. Their high against San Antonio in three previous games
But the Spurs outrebounded Phoenix 63-36, including a
season-high 26 offensive rebounds.
Tim Duncan grabbed 13 boards, including nine on the offensive
The Spurs' rebounding advantage nullified Phoenix's usual
efficient game on the offensive end. Making 41 of 80 field-goal
attempts, the Suns outshot San Antonio (51 percent to 48). Phoenix
also blanked the Spurs on the fast break, 18-0.
The Suns trailed 94-92 with 5:26 remaining in the game when Nash
scored on a driving layup and made a free throw after he was fouled
But Tony Parker made 3 of 4 shot attempts over the next 3:10 to
give the Spurs a 102-95 lead with 1:50 to go.
San Antonio led by 10 points in the first half when Mohammed
missed a layup but tipped in Bruce Bowen's missed tip with 3:46
remaining before halftime.
But the Suns were 7-for-9 from the field to end the quarter and
took their first lead of the game, 56-55, at halftime.
Boris Diaw made all three of his shots during the stretch and
made both free throws along with blocking two shots.
In the last meeting between the teams, the Suns were held to
less than 100 points for the first time in three games. Phoenix
played that game without Nash, who's played in the four games since
then. The Suns have surpassed the 100-point mark in all of those
Phoenix played its fifth game in seven days, going 3-2 during
The Spurs signed Melvin Sanders, a rookie guard/forward
from Oklahoma State, to a 10-day contract. It's the third time this
season Sanders has been signed by San Antonio. ... The Suns lost
their first game in seven tries with the starting lineup of James
Jones, Marion, Boris Diaw, Raja Bell and Nash. ... Manu Ginobili
broke out of a shooting slump with a 4-for-9 effort from the floor.
He was seven of 28 in his previous three games. ... Marion picked
up his 500th career 3-pointer when he made his first of the game in
the fourth quarter. Only Dan Majerle has made more than 500
3-pointers during his career with the Suns.