NBA: Spurs send Lakers to fifth-straight loss

Tony Parker scored 24 points on 10-of-16 shooting and Manu Ginobili had 19 points as the San Antonio Spurs defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 108-105 on Wednesday.

Ginobili scored a crucial three-pointer with 43 seconds left and pulled down eight rebounds for the Spurs, who bounced back from a loss to the New Orleans Hornets on Monday.

Tiago Splitter finished with 14 points and 14 rebounds for San Antonio, who improved to 15-2 at home this season. Stephen Jackson scored 14 points before leaving the game with 3:32 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Kobe Bryant ended with 27 points for the Lakers, who suffered their fifth consecutive defeat.

Metta World Peace added 23 points, eight rebounds and seven steals, while Earl Clark had 22 points and 13 rebounds.

The first-place Spurs improved to 28-10 with the help of their big three Parker, Ginobili and Tim Duncan.

Heading into Wednesday's contest Parker, Ginobili and Duncan were averaging a combined 49.4 points per game this season. Duncan had eight points, seven rebounds and five assists Wednesday.

The Lakers have been struggling but one bright aspect is they have now scored at least 100 points in 18 of their last 20 games.

The Lakers played without centre Dwight Howard (right shoulder) as well as forwards Pau Gasol (concussion).

Steve Nash finished with 14 points and nine assists against San Antonio. Nash notched his 10,000th career assist in a loss to Houston on Tuesday. He is the fourth fastest to reach the milestone in NBA history.

The Lakers have now lost four in a row versus the Spurs, including an early season 84-82 setback at home on November 13.

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