SAN ANTONIO – France’s veteran point guard Tony Parker turned back the clock and scored 23 points to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 100-98 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies, who lost their 14th consecutive game.
Parker, who scored 11 points in the first quarter, managed more in the final stretch of the game that went on to decide the Spurs victory.
Having lost eight of their last 10 games, the Spurs (37-27) moved up from sixth to fifth place in the Western Conference, but now they have to face another difficult tour, which could jeopardize their playoff qualification for the first time in 21 seasons.
The Spurs will have to face the Golden state Warriors, current league champions, Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets, the team with the best record in the league with 15 consecutive wins in their bag.
Spurs Latvian forward Davis Bertans was the second highest scorer with 17 points, while guard Danny Green had 14 points.
With this victory, San Antonio broke a four-game losing streak at the AT&T Center.
The return of power forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who contributed seven points, or Pau Gasol, who contributed to merely two points in the 24 minutes of his play, could not be a winning factor this time.
The elder of the Gasol brothers missed the four field goals he attempted, including a three-pointer, and hit 2-of-2 from the free-throw line. He also had seven rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks.
Meanwhile, veteran Argentine guard Manu Ginobili, who played for 20 minutes, contributed four points, including a three-pointer. He also had two rebounds and one assist.
Marc Gasol scored a double-double of 24 points and 10 rebounds, although they were not enough to avoid defeat.
Rookie forward Dillon Brooks scored 21 points, one less than his career-best, and power forward JaMychal Green managed a double-double with 14 points and 15 rebounds for the Grizzlies (18-45).