Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports
The Spurs exploited every Lakers' weakness, dominating the game inside and withstanding a furious fourth quarter run as L.A. couldn't overcome the absence of its top three frontcourt players.
Down six, the Lakers got a clutch three-pointer from an unlikely source in Earl Clark. A subsequent Spurs turnover made things interesting with 10.4 seconds left, but Kobe Bryant and Clark each missed three-pointers on relatively good looks to end the game.
Bryant struggled mightily in the first half, going just 2-of-6 and scoring eight points. He finished with 27 points and five assists.
San Antonio executed their offense flawlessly and exploited the porous Lakers defense as they used dribble penetration and crisp passing to get open looks from all over the court. The Spurs shot an outstanding 48.8 percent from the field and 48 from the thee-point line.
Tony Parker led the Spurs' effort with 24 points, six assists, three rebounds and three steals.
The lone bright spot for the Lakers was the play of reserve Earl Clark, who seized the opportunity to showcase what he could do on a national stage with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Robert Sacre, starting in place of Dwight Howard, struggled to find any rhythm on either end of the floor as he put up just four points and two rebounds.
The Lakers finished the second leg of their "Texas two-step" road trip with their second straight loss in the Lone Star State and have lost five straight games for the first time since April 3-10, 2011. The Spurs, meanwhile, sit firmly atop the Southwest Division.