More NBA, including Dantley's NBA comeback, D3.SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Magic Johnson says his vote for Most Valuable Player would go to David Robinson of the San Antonio Spurs after both players turned in MVP performances.
But Robinson said Johnson and the Los Angeles Lakers had the only statistic that counted. The Lakers, led by Johnson's 13th triple-double of the season, defeated the Spurs 122-115 on Tuesday night.Johnson had 30 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists. Robinson had 36 points, a career-high 23 rebounds, three steals, three blocked shots and five assists.
"We played a division leader and came out with a win," Johnson said. "Every possession was important to us."
Johnson then heaped praise on Robinson.
"He's amazing. He's so cat-quick, what a promising player," Johnson said. "He's got quite a future ahead of him and who knows, possibly an MVP this year."
But Robinson would have rather had the victory.
"Those numbers don't mean anything," he said. "We lost the game and that was a tough loss. We have a tough road trip ahead of us and I hope this loss can give us some incentive to go out and play that much tougher."
San Antonio also got 20 points from Willie Anderson and 16 from Sean Elliott.
Byron Scott had 19 points and James Worthy 18 for the Lakers.
Johnson saved his best for the fourth quarter when he scored 16 points and was 8-for-8 at the free throw line to finish 13-of-13 on free throws.
"We needed to control Magic and we didn't," Spurs coach Larry Brown said. "When Byron Scott's and Terry Teagle's shot were falling he was there to get the rebounds."
The Spurs were often mismatched against Johnson and missed the services of Paul Pressey who sat out with a strained right calf.
Robinson said it gave Johnson the opportunity to do some of the things he did.
"We like to use Paul on Magic because of his size," Robinson said. "We had to use a smaller man on him and he took advantage of it."