SAN ANTONIO — Gregg Popovich tied Don Nelson’s all-time NBA record of 1,335 wins as a coach after his team, the San Antonio Spurs, beat the Los Angeles Lakers 117-110 on Monday.
Popovich, in his 26th season, will try to pass Nelson when San Antonio hosts the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night.
The Spurs had lost four straight with Popovich on the verge of catching Nelson’s record, and were in danger of extending that losing streak because they faltered at the end against the Lakers, who are on a losing streak and lacking their star LeBron James. due to a sore left knee.
Dejounte Murray had 26 points and 10 rebounds, and Jakob Poeltl and Josh Richardson each finished with 18 points. Richardson made his first start with San Antonio.
Talen Horton-Taylor was the best scorer for Los Angeles with 18 points while Russell Westbrook, Malik Monk and Carmelo Anthony each had 17.
Popovich has won five NBA titles and is guaranteed his place in the NBA Hall of Fame due to his career, in which he has managed Spurs greats like David Robinson, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Argentina’s Manu. Ginobili. Robinson was sitting courtside Monday and Popovich jokingly told him to take over for a moment.
The Lakers pulled within 108-105 on Horton-Taylor’s jumper with 5:40 remaining and the Spurs went scoreless for nearly four minutes until Poeltl made a good free throw with 37.4 left. The Angels never cut the deficit below three points.
The Lakers played without James and Anthony Davis. James was ruled out at the last minute Monday after posting a season-high 56 points in a win over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday.
Los Angeles had lost four straight and seven of eight before James posted his highest scoring total with the Lakers for the third-highest total of his career.
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Gregg Popovich reaches all-time record for wins