Tuesday , May , 09 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Spurs try to grab 2-0 lead over Mavs in West semis

=== Spurs try to grab 2-0 lead over Mavs in West semis ===

(Sports Network) – The San Antonio Spurs attempt to take a 2-0 lead over the
Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals, as the teams meet in
Game 2 tonight at the AT&T Center.

Game 3 of this best-of-seven set is scheduled to be played on Saturday at
American Airlines Center.

In Game 1, Bruce Bowen drained a huge three-pointer with 2:14 left in the
game, and then handcuffed Dirk Nowitzki on the defensive end to help the top-
seeded Spurs edge No. 4 Dallas, 87-85, on Sunday at the AT&T Center.

Tim Duncan paced the Spurs with a game-high 31 points and 13 rebounds, while
Tony Parker added 19 points and Manu Ginobili netted 15 in the victory. Bowen
finished with just six points for San Antonio, which defeated the eighth-
seeded Sacramento Kings in six games in the first round.

Jerry Stackhouse ended with 24 points off the bench for the Mavericks, who
lost for the first time in the playoffs. Dallas eliminated No. 5 Memphis in
four games in the opening round

Dirk Nowitzki finished with 20 points and 14 rebounds in Game 1’s loss for the
Mavericks, while Josh Howard contributed 17 points and nine boards in defeat.

The Mavericks have won two of their last three Game 2s in the postseason,
while San Antonio has won seven straight Game 2s. The last time the Spurs lost
the second game of a playoff series was on June 6, 2003 when they were
defeated by the New Jersey Nets, 87-85, in Game 2 of the NBA Finals.

The Spurs knocked off the Detroit Pistons in seven games in last year’s
NBA Finals and have won the NBA title in two of three and three of the last
seven years (1999, 2003, 2005).

San Antonio has reached at least the conference semifinals five straight
years. The Spurs defeated Dallas in five in the 2001 semis, lost to the
Lakers in five in 2002, beat the Lakers in six in the second round of the
2003 playoffs, fell to the Lakers in six in 2004 and beat Seattle in six
contests in last year’s semifinals.

The Mavericks, who knocked out Houston in seven games during last year’s
first round, were eliminated in six games in the 2005 Western Conference
semifinals by the Phoenix Suns. They have advanced to the conference finals
just twice in franchise history (1988, 2003) and have never been to the NBA

Dallas has reached at least the conference semifinals for the fifth time in
the last six years. The Mavericks were ousted by Sacramento in the first round
of the 2004 playoffs during that span

This is the third time that these teams have met in the postseason. San
Antonio knocked out the Mavericks in the 2001 semis and defeated Dallas in six
games in the 2003 conference finals.

During the regular season, the teams split four games. Both squads picked up
wins at home and on the road.