Spurs Keep Playoff Hopes Alive With Rout Of Rockets


The San Antonio Spurs (31-38) kept their playoff hopes alive with a 123-105 victory over the Houston Rockets (44-25) on Tuesday afternoon in their penultimate game of the regular season.

The victory was the second straight for San Antonio, who are just a half-game out of the ninth seed and a full game out of the eighth seed. The Spurs would need to win on Thursday and have both the Portland Trail Blazers and Phoenix Suns lose at least one of their final games.

After a close first quarter, the Spurs took control in the second period. San Antonio outscored Houston 35-24 and led by as many as 29 points. DeRozan paced the Silver and Black with 15 points in the first half.

San Antonio got a glimpse of their future as Keldon Johnson led the team with 24 points and 11 rebounds. DeMar DeRozan added 23 points, while Jakob Poeltl finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds.

“That’s what he does,” Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich said. “He’s a high-energy guy. He’s very physical. Very competitive. Very coachable. He’s just a winner.”

Derrick White returned to action after suffering a knee contusion in Sunday’s game. He was limited to just seven points on 22 percent shooting.

Houston was without James Harden (rest) and Eric Gordon (ankle). Russell Westbrook had 20 points in his first game back from injury while Jeff Green had 17 points.

Johnson was the story of the night and his hard work and dedication have really paid off for him.

“Whether it’s hustling, running the floor – just doing whatever I need to do to help us win,” he said. “Help from my teammates has definitely helped the game slow down for me.”


The Spurs are now 31-38 on the season and will return to the court on Thursday afternoon to face the Utah Jazz (43-28) at 5:30 p.m.


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