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Spurs wrap-up Lakers sweep

SAN ANTONIO — It's usually not good for the San Antonio Spurs when the words "Lakers" and "sweep" appear in the same sentence.

Not this year.

Tim Duncan had 27 points and Tony Parker scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half as the Spurs beat Los Angeles 98-89 Sunday to complete a four-game regular-season sweep of the defending NBA champions.

The Spurs had last swept a season series against Los Angeles in 1993-94.

"We came out aggressive and really stuck with it," Duncan said. "They really challenged us ... We just did a lot of good things as a team."

San Antonio took control by making 10 of 15 shots in the third quarter. The Spurs led by as many as 19 points in the quarter as the Lakers shot 6-for-31. Parker had eight points on 3-for-3 shooting in the period, then added eight free throws in the fourth.

"I'm always on this team about coming out strong in the second half and playing with the kind of energy we have to, especially against San Antonio," Lakes coach Phil Jackson said. "We were a little lackadaisical and didn't taken advantage of a lot of opportunities."

Shaquille O'Neal, who had 32 points and 12 rebounds, had a basket and a three-point play that closed the Lakers to 71-61 with 10 minutes remaining. But Manu Ginobili countered eight points to help the Spurs maintain a double-digit advantage.

"We made some silly mistakes and that cost us," O'Neal said. "We beat ourselves more than they did."

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich held back from giving his team full credit for sweeping the Lakers, who needed only nine games to oust San Antonio from the postseason during the past two playoffs.

"We've only beaten them twice — Shaq has only played in two of the games," Popovich said, remembering that O'Neal had been sidelined by foot surgery. "They are still the best team on the planet until proved different in the playoffs."

Kobe Bryant, who had 31 points of 11-for-30 shooting, made a 15-footer and then a breakaway dunk off a steal with 2:48 left, cutting the lead to 84-79.

Duncan followed with a shot on the run. Parker stole the ball from O'Neal on an inbounds and was fouled at the other end, making a pair of free throws that increased the lead to 88-79 with 1:40 to go.

O'Neal's short hook and a dunk trimmed the lead to five, but Parker made four more free throws and Ginobili intercepted a pass to Bryant and took it in for a layup for a 96-85 lead with 25.6 seconds left.

76ERS 112, RAPTORS 95: At Toronto, Allen Iverson scored 32 points as the Philadelphia 76ers ended a two-game losing streak.

Iverson, the league's No. 3 scorer, recovered from two subpar games — he had just five points in Thursday's loss to Detroit and went 9-for-27 from the field in Saturday's loss to Atlanta — to go 14-for-25 from the field.

MAGIC 96, HEAT 74: At Miami, Tracy McGrady made a career-high seven 3-pointers and scored 35 points Sunday as the Orlando Magic won their fourth in a row, 96-74 over the Miami Heat.

McGrady scored 21 in the first quarter and finished 15-of-27 from the field to go along with seven rebounds and five assists.

PISTONS 105, BULLS 82: At Auburn Hills, Mich., Richard Hamilton scored 26 points and Ben Wallace pulled down 20 rebounds as the Detroit Pistons routed the Chicago Bulls 105-82 Sunday.

The Pistons are 3-0 against the Bulls this season, and have won 17 of 19 meetings since Michael Jordan left Chicago.