El Conclusión: Los Angeles Clippers 92, San Antonio Spurs 87
|Tim Duncan, PF 34 MIN | 6-16 FG | 8-10 FT | 14 REB | 1 AST | 20 PTS | +1While not his most efficient night from the field (he struggled finishing over the top of DeAndre Jordan at times), Duncan was his typical this year’s version of his stellar self. His continued aggression at attacking the rim led to free throws (10 attempts) and second chance points (five offensive rebounds). Needs help on boards.|
|Stephen Jackson, SF 11 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | +8This would be an incomplete if incomplete was an option on these things. Jackson broke his pinky finger and will be out for 4-6 weeks. The Spurs missed and will continue to miss his toughness and rebounding.|
|DeJuan Blair, C 18 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | +5Yes, he reaches and gambles and at times needs Duncan to bail him out. But he makes things happen (two steals) at times. And the need to be bailed out by Duncan extends to the other bigs in the rotation as well. His interior passing continues to make him a good pairing with Duncan and is perhaps only a notch below Diaw’s.|
|Tony Parker, PG 33 MIN | 5-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 11 PTS | +5Not much is working for Tony Parker this season. Perhaps the most telling moment came when he caught Blake Griffin on a switch, isolated, and ended up with nothing. More telling, Griffin did not really back off Parker at all. It’s hard to remember a set this season in which Parker had made an opposing team pay for switching.|
|Danny Green, SG 35 MIN | 2-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 6 PTS | -4Danny Green had a rough night from the field, missing a few open jumpers. His defense has been pretty consistent all season, he helped some on the glass. But in all not much impact for the 35 minutes he saw.|
|Matt Bonner, PF 11 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 10 PTS | +3How weird was this game? Matt Bonner began the Spurs comeback with a lefty floater, got to the rim and finished on another trip, and on one crucial possession defended an isolated Chris Paul better than anyone on his team had all night (only for the Spurs to give up an offensive rebound).|
|Tiago Splitter, PF 17 MIN | 2-2 FG | 5-5 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 9 PTS | -1Tiago Splitter remains a foul magnet, which makes him a more than useful player when he’s hitting his free throws. Defensively his best attribute is sticking his hands straight up, which works some because he’s really long. Moving his feet, however, doesn’t always work. Was torched at times by Blake Griffin.|
|Boris Diaw, C 16 MIN | 0-1 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 1 PTS | -18Tony Parker wasn’t the only invisible Frenchman tonight.|
|Patrick Mills, PG 10 MIN | 0-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -7Not many people can stay in front of Patty Mills full court, but Eric Bledsoe is one of them.|
|Gary Neal, PG 23 MIN | 3-11 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 7 PTS | +1In his first game back from injury Neal’s shot was a little off and his decision-making more than rusty. Also, asking him to bring the ball up against Eric Bledsoe just isn’t fair.|
|Nando de Colo, PG 5 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -12Got in the game just long enough to turn it over twice and convince Pop the moment was just too much for him.|
|Manu Ginobili, SG 28 MIN | 3-11 FG | 8-10 FT | 5 REB | 5 AST | 15 PTS | -6The shot was a little off and he had a little trouble finishing, but if you want to look for positive signs of Ginobili returning to form, the 10 free throw attempts are a much better indicator than the three-pointers.|
Five Things We Saw
- Without Kawhi Leonard and Stephen Jackson the Spurs are in trouble. Tim Duncan is now the only plus-rebounder on the roster and the Spurs face a glaring lack of size on the wings. So many good defensive possessions were lost with an offensive rebound that Jack or Leonard normally clean up.
- It didn’t take very long this season for Pop to break out the “soft” word, grilling his team after the game for a lack of competitiveness.
- Eric Bledsoe is a beast of an energy player waiting to be fully unleashed off the bench. Come playoffs his minutes should jump considerably–a scary proposition for a Spurs team that really has no counter for him.
- I expect to see more Matt Bonner through these Jackson/Leonard injuries. Without any size on the wings, small ball is almost completely off the menu. To survive, the Spurs are going to have to outscore teams, and Bonner’s spacing is certainly something that can turbo charge the offense during the regular season.
- With no small forwards and Manu Ginobili coming back from injury, the Spurs need Tony Parker to play well. He has not.