The San Antonio Spurs are officially warmed up.
Tim Duncan had 29 points and 12 rebounds and Avery Johnson had 17 points and 15 assists Tuesday night as the Spurs won their eighth straight game 121-109 over the Sacramento Kings.
It's been a nice turnaround for the Spurs, who haven't lost in March after opening with a 6-8 record.
"We have some new guys and we had to learn the system," said Mario Elie, who scored a season-high 23 points. "We knew we had a good team, it was just going to take some time for us to start playing together. We're playing with a lot of confidence right now."
San Antonio made 61 percent of its shots in producing a season-high point total. It was only the Spurs fourth game with 100 or more points this season.
"They are a tough matchup for us with those two big guys around the basket," Kings coach Rick Adelman said. "And we didn't play well on defense, we gave up too many easy baskets."
Realizing the Kings were playing their third game in three nights, the well-rested Spurs came out running, scoring 33 first-quarter points and shooting 72 percent. They didn't shoot less than 52 percent in any quarter and finished at 61 percent.
"We knew they had played three games in three nights and we had two days off," Elie said. "We wanted to get it going early. I thought they did a great job of coming back in the fourth quarter, but they were tired."
The Spurs, who led by 21 points midway through the third quarter but saw the lead cut to four early in the fourth, scored eight straight points to take a 106-93 lead with 5:53 left. Elie had a layup and a 3-point play in the run.
David Robinson finished with 18 points and Sean Elliott 17 for the Spurs, who led 63-53 at the half.
"They've got a 7-footer and a 6-11 guy and create a lot of problems," Kings reerve forward Lawrence Funderburke said. "Not only that, they are intelligent guys. They know the game well and they really move the ball around."
Vlade Divac paced Sacramento with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Chris Webber added 15 points and 14 rebounds. Vernon Maxwell scored 16 points, Tariq Abdul-Wahad had 14 and Jason Williams finished with 11 points and 10 assists. Notes: Through the game's first eight minutes, San Antonio was shooting 87 percent. ... Webber picked up his third foul at the 11:39 mark of the second quarter, yet played the rest of the period without getting his fourth. ... Elliott, Duncan and Elie combined 16 of 20 shots. ... In the Kings last three losses, they've never led. ... Duncan missed 7-of-9 free throws.
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