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Parker, Duncan sizzle as Spurs stiffle Rockets

TONY Parker scored 28 points as the San Antonio Spurs edged the Houston Rockets 88-85 in a key Southwest Division clash in Houston on Saturday.

San Antonio (44-21) took a 2 1/2-game lead in the division on the second-placed Rockets (43-25) with the narrow win.

Michael Finley scored 17 points and Tim Duncan contributed 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Spurs, who were beaten 95-102 by the Western Conference-leading Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday.

"That was a big win for us," Parker told reporters. "We're battling for home-court advantage so these wins are big.

"To come back and win here after losing to the Lakers is huge, too. There was a lot of playoff intensity out there."

In other National Basketball Association games, it was: Heat 140, Jazz 129 (in triple overtime); Timberwolves 108, Bobcats 100; Bulls 97, Hornets 79; Nuggets 107, Clippers 94; and Suns 106, Thunder 95.

In Houston, Parker and Duncan scored the Spurs' final 15 points.

The Spurs also made two big defensive stops in the final 15 seconds to preserve the win.

Ron Artest led Houston with 21 points and nine rebounds, while Yao Ming added 18 points and had 11 rebounds for the Rockets.

It was the second successive home loss for the Rockets after a 12-game home winning streak had helped propel them to within 1 1/2 games of the Spurs in the division.

In Miami, Florida, Dwyane Wade scored 50 points as the Heat pulled off two huge last-ditch rallies to beat the Jazz in a triple-overtime epic.

The Heat erased a seven-point deficit in the final 55 seconds of regulation to force the extra period.

Wade added 10 rebounds and nine assists, Jermaine O'Neal added 28 points and eight rebounds, and Mario Chalmers scored 23.

Williams led Utah with 30 points and 13 assists.


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