PHOENIX (AP) — The San Antonio Spurs left the Phoenix Suns bloodied and beaten in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals.
Tim Duncan had 33 points and 16 rebounds — eight offensive —and Tony Parker added 32 points to lead the Spurs to a rough-and-tumble 111-106 victory on Sunday.
Steve Nash scored 31 for Phoenix but missed a crucial 45 seconds in the final minute because of a bloody cut on his nose, the result of a head-on collision with Parker with 2:53 to play. The cut required six stitches after the game.
Michael Finley added 19 points for San Antonio, which with the victory has home-court advantage the rest of the series.
Amare Stoudemire had 20 points and 18 rebounds but was just 6-of-19 shooting. Leandro Barbosa scored 18 points for the Suns. Shawn Marion, after a slow start, scored 16, 11 in the final quarter.
Game 2 is Tuesday night in Phoenix.
After Parker stole Nash’s pass, the two collided head-to-head in the San Antonio backcourt. Parker fell to the floor and Nash walked away bleeding. Parker eventually got to his feet and both stayed in the game, Nash with a bandage over the cut.
Nash made a 3-pointer to tie it at 102 with 2:25 to play, then Duncan gave the Spurs the lead for good with a 10-foot baseline hook shot. Nash missed a 3, then Parker sank a 23-footer to put San Antonio ahead 106-102 with 1:23 remaining.
Nash’s driving layup with 1:13 left cut it to 106-104 1:13 from the finish, and Raja Bell drew an offensive foul on Parker to give Phoenix the ball. But Nash had to come out with 54.8 seconds to go because of blood oozing around the bandage.
The bleeding finally was contained and Nash returned with 9.1 seconds to go, but by then San Antonio led 110-106.
The Spurs were 5-for-9 at the foul line down the stretch, just good enough to pull away.
After Nash’s departure, Barbosa missed a 3-pointer that would have given Phoenix the lead. Manu Ginobili made one of two free throws to make it 107-104 with 32.8 seconds to play, then Stoudemire’s two free throws sliced the lead to 107-106 with 26.7 seconds to go.
After a San Antonio timeout, Barbosa was called for a foul before the ball was thrown inbounds. That meant Finley got a free throw, and made it, and San Antonio kept possession.
Neither team led by more than eight points in the intense contest between the teams with the two best records left in the playoffs.
Marion broke out of a subpar offensive game to score seven in the 82 seconds of the fourth quarter. His 3-pointer, followed by a fastbreak layup, put Phoenix ahead 84-83 with 9:38 remaining.