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San Antonio Spurs defeat Golden State Warriors in a game where stars do not play

Allen Kee / ESPN Images(SAN ANTONIO) -- The San Antonio Spurs defeated the Golden State Warriors 107-85 Saturday night in a much-anticipated matchup that likely left many fans disappointed come tip off.

The Warriors, wanting to prevent their starters from getting injured, and the Spurs, who lost their top two scorers LaMarcus Aldridge and Kawhi Leonard to injuries within a two-day span, left their stars on the bench for the game.

Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andre Iguodala did not play, a decision announced one day prior by head coach Steve Kerr. For the Spurs, Leonard is recovering from a concussion he suffered Thursday. Aldridge is sidelined indefinitely due to an occurrence of a minor heart arrhythmia.

Ian Clark came off the bench for the Warriors to score a game-high 36 points. Patty Mills was the star for San Antonio, scoring 21 points in 21 minutes.

The Warriors have held a lead atop the Western Conference standings for most of the season. Despite that, Kerr chose not to rest star Kevin Durant during a game in late February, and he ended up injuring his knee and could miss the rest of the regular season.

However, that first place lead has been shrinking of late. The San Antonio Spurs are surging and have moved within half a game of first place. Meanwhile the Warriors have lost five of their last seven games.

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said keeping his team healthy is a greater priority than winning the top seed in the Western Conference. Golden State just played eight games over the past 13 days, and arrived in San Antonio at 3 a.m. on Saturday after a loss to Minnesota.

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