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Spurs-Pelicans Preview

Anthony Davis is on a roll and so are the New Orleans Pelicans.

Davis scored 43 and 40 points in victories against New York and Denver, respectively, to start the Pelicans home-stand, which concludes against San Antonio on Monday night. New Orleans won both of those games and has won five of its last six.

The All-NBA forward needed just 10 field goals to get to 40 points in a 125-110 victory against the Nuggets on Saturday because he made 20 of 21 free throws,

"It's pretty hard to stop him, especially when he gets in a groove like that," Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday said. "We don't think anyone can guard him."

Davis also had eight assists against Denver, tying a career-high. It was his seventh game with at least six assists this season, which is one fewer time than he accomplished that feat in his previous six seasons.

"I just realized that a lot of teams are scouting for me," Davis said. "They didn't want me to go off I guess, so I'm just trying to find guys and guys are playing with a lot of confidence and making shots. They know and I know where they are going to be and they know where I like them to be."

Davis helped the Pelicans overtake the Nuggets in the first quarter and never trail again. Against the Knicks he helped them overcome a 19-point deficit.

He had just 17 points and eight rebounds in a 109-105 loss at San Antonio on Nov. 3 as he returned from a one-game absence due to a strained right elbow. That was the fifth of six consecutive losses that preceded New Orleans' current successful run.

The Spurs are coming off a 104-92 home victory against Golden State on Sunday night. That ended a three-game losing streak and a stretch of five losses in six games.

Forward LaMarcus Aldridge broke out of a slump to have 24 points on 10-of-16 shooting and grab 17 rebounds. DeMar DeRozan added 20 points and Rudy Gay had 19 as five Spurs scored in double figures.

Aldridge credited Gay, who has moved into the starting lineup after coming off the bench for three games earlier in the season, with giving the team a lift.

"Whether he is starting or not, he just adds a veteran player that can score, that can make plays, that can isolate, that can make teams respect him," Aldridge told the San Antonio Express-News. "He just brings a different dynamic."

It was San Antonio's defense that was most impressive as it held the Warriors to 40.7 percent shooting (35-of-86).

"Our defense the last two games has improved a lot as far as switches, as far as communication, as far as trying to protect the rim," Aldridge told the Express-News. "I think the last two games we've made a huge step in that direction."

The Spurs will need a similar defensive effort if they are going to slow down Davis and the Pelicans, who averaged 127 points in the last two games.

Updated November 18, 2018

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