Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 1/26/13
The Southwest Division-leading San Antonio Spurs own the best home record in the NBA, and that doesn't seem likely to change against their next opponent. The Phoenix Suns, however, are finding a spark under new coach Lindsey Hunter. While it's unclear if coach Gregg Popovich and forward Tim Duncan will return, the Spurs go for a 16th straight home win Saturday night when they face the Suns for the first time this season. San Antonio (35-11) is a league-best 19-2 at home, winning 15 in a row since a 92-87 defeat to the Los Angeles Clippers on Nov. 19. It's the Spurs' longest winning streak at AT&T Center since reeling off a franchise-record 22 straight in 2010-11. Their current dominance includes averaging 107.1 points while limiting opponents to 42.9 percent from the floor - 30.9 from behind the arc. Lately, the venue hasn't mattered with San Antonio putting together a season high-tying seven-game winning streak following Friday's 113-107 victory at Dallas. It was the second consecutive game the Spurs played without Popovich (illness) and Duncan (knee). The Spurs were also down Tony Parker for nearly a quarter Friday after he required three stitches to close a cut above his eye. He returned to finish with 23 points and 10 assists. "I think this group has shown that ability to if somebody is down then somebody else is going to step up," said Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer. "They all have a lot of confidence, and they know we have confidence in them." DeJuan Blair should have plenty of confidence after scoring a season-high 22 points against the Mavericks, picking up the slack in Duncan's absence again. Duncan, though, averages 23.0 points and 12.1 rebounds in 28 career home meetings with Phoenix (15-28). A visit from the Suns would only appear to help keep the Spurs rolling. They've averaged 109.2 points during six straight regular-season home wins in the series since a loss on Oct. 29, 2008. Phoenix, though, is entering this meeting in search of a third straight victory since Hunter surprisingly replaced Alvin Gentry on the bench Sunday following a woeful 2-13 stretch. "When you change a coach, you always get a little bit of a reaction from everybody," forward Luis Scola said. "Everybody wants to play a little bit harder and everybody wants to do a little bit more. This is just a critical situation and everybody gives a little bit more of themselves." Hunter's insistence on improved defensive play seems to be partly responsible. The Suns won his debut 106-96 at Sacramento on Wednesday, and followed that up the next day by holding the Pacific Division-leading Clippers to 39.8 percent shooting in a 93-88 victory. "Our focus is to create a defensive mentality, to create a defensive presence," Hunter said. "Our guys are working hard to do it. It's a difficult thing to just change like that. To see every last guy really buying into it and realizing that regardless of how you shoot the ball, if you can defend you always have a chance to win a game, and our guys have been phenomenal in that area." Goran Dragic, Phoenix's leader with 14.2 points and 6.2 assists per game, seems to be adjusting just fine under Hunter. He had 24 points and eight assists Thursday after dishing out 11 against the Kings. The guard, though, is averaging 3.3 points and 2.8 assists in six visits to San Antonio. Sebastian Telfair had no points in 14 minutes against Los Angeles, but he may see an increased role since he's totaled 41 in the past two meetings with the Spurs.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

A-Rod is (inadvertently) hurting the Yankees

Report: CM Punk to have back surgery, UFC debut delayed

John Elway: 2015 Broncos could be best defense ever

Lakers and Cavs discussed Kobe-LeBron trade in 2007

Report: Hiring Scott Brooks could help Knicks land Durant

Report: Tyreke Evans to undergo surgery, miss rest of season

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Sabathia on post-rehab health: The best I've felt in three years

Carmelo Anthony says he's putting his trust in Phil Jackson

Lynn Swann: Calvin Johnson not a Hall of Famer

NFL requiring background checks for combine participants

Rams owner buys massive 520,000-acre Texas ranch

Cam Newton explains why he did not dive on fumble

Craig Sager: From the brink of death to the NBA All-Star Game

Michael Oher slid backwards during play in Super Bowl 50

Magic interested in Blake Griffin trade?

Brandon Marshall on Newton’s presser: ‘You can’t do that’

Oscillation, thy name is Pablo Sandoval

Mat Latos could be the steal of free agency

WATCH: Blackhawks coach walks out of press conference

Greg McElroy: Cam Newton 'quit on his team'

Tennis umpires secretly banned over gambling issues

WATCH: Dancing Kentucky fan slides down rail, fails

Clemson LB has great response to NFL draft analyst's criticism

Former Aggies QB Kyle Allen reveals culture problems at Texas A&M

Roy Williams collapses during game vs. BC

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker