PISTON RECOVERY: Detroit Pistons Isiah Thomas and Bill Laimbeer had surgery over the weekend but are expected to recover in time for the team's Nov. 2 season-opener.

Thomas (ruptured tear duct) will miss Wednesday's exhibition game against the New York Knicks; Laimbeer (fractured left cheekbone) will miss the next three exhibitions. Both were hurt in Saturday's game against Seattle.

ROBINSON ON SCHINTZIUS: His statistics have been modest, but Dwayne Schintzius has convinced at least one person in San Antonio that his NBA career is off to the right start.

"I look at guys like Mark Eaton and Joe Kleine, who have been productive in this league, and they don't have the talent that Dwayne has," Spurs center David Robinson said. "Once Dwayne learns how to use his size -- and hopefully I can help him -- he can be a player. I don't think he realizes yet what he might be able to do. He's already proven to me in practice that he wants to learn."

Schintzius, a rookie center from Florida who held out part of training camp, has played sparingly in the past three exhibition games but has shown enough promise that the Spurs are expected to release veteran center Mark McNamara, who was signed because of doubts about Schintzius.

"I feel like I'm getting better every day," Schintzius said.

MOVES: Seattle released forwards Mike Giomi and Mike Higgins.