El Conclusión: San Antonio Spurs 112, Boston Celtics 100

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San Antonio Spurs 112 Final

Recap | Box Score

100 Boston Celtics
Tim Duncan, PF 33 MIN | 7-12 FG | 6-9 FT | 15 REB | 4 AST | 20 PTS | -3Thankful for…his continued excellence and late career resurgence. Just two years ago who would have thought we could be sitting here tonight watching Duncan and Garnett continue to battle at the highest levels of basketball?
DeJuan Blair, C 20 MIN | 5-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 10 PTS | -1Thankful for…his professionalism this season. Coming into the season DeJuan Blair expected to be out of San Antonio, but merely found himself out of the rotation. Then back in. And now starting. Through it all he’s still displayed tremendous energy and subtle improvements.
Tony Parker, PG 37 MIN | 12-17 FG | 1-3 FT | 3 REB | 6 AST | 26 PTS | -1Thankful for…a night of Tony Parker being Tony Parker again. He was fast in the open court, quick on the draw, and solid in his decision-making. It’s been a rough early season for which Parker should thank Duncan’s play for deflecting any heavy criticism.
Gary Neal, PG 29 MIN | 5-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 12 PTS | -4Thankful for…the confidence Gary Neal has in his shot. No, you don’t want him bringing the ball up against pressure. Or running a steady stream of pick and rolls. But his ability and lack of hesitation to pull at a moment’s notice is enough to put any defense on edge.
Danny Green, SG 39 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 10 PTS | +3Thankful for…his remarkable work ethic. Green continues to improve, adding subtle skills and more consistency. There are still mistakes to be sure, but you find the same ones being repeated less and less.
Tiago Splitter, PF 26 MIN | 9-11 FG | 5-5 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 23 PTS | +19Thankful for…tonight’s performance AND HIS FREE THROW SHOOTING. Tiago Splitter was THE difference maker tonight, contesting shots, running the floor, and generally always being in the right place at the right time. He continues to draw fouls in bunches and is now knocking them down.
Boris Diaw, C 23 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 5 AST | 6 PTS | +10Thankful for…his all-around floor game. In any frontcourt pairing Diaw simply enhances his teammates’ games while contributing a little bit of this and a little bit of that in the box score.
Nando de Colo, PG 11 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | +13Thankful for…the idea of Nando de Colo, more than the player he is right now. The passing and flair is fun and fantastic. The shot leaves much to be desirable. But the promise of more to come after a summer of working with the Spurs development staff is intriguing.
Manu Ginobili, SG 24 MIN | 2-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 5 PTS | +24Thankful for…the little things. It hasn’t been the best of Manu Ginobili so far this season. But the competitive spirit is still there, and it shows in little things like swiping a ball from behind so the Celtics don’t get a shot off at the clock.

Five Things We Saw

  1. Tony Parker was fast again. Tonight was the first patented Parker one-man fastbreak that I can remember in sometime. He was aggressive, gained huge amounts of space on opponents in very little time. If the Spurs can pair this Parker with this Duncan they will be a serious threat to any team.
  2. Duncan and Garnett dueling in the fourth quarter of a relevant game. Garnett remains an excellent defender, and Duncan in the post isn’t the same anchor it used to be. But Duncan’s such a great player he simply adjusts. Moves to the face-up game, hits jumpers, finds open space in pick and roll sets. As great as Garnett is at reading offenses, Duncan is equally capable of countering every move.
  3. Tiago Splitter is showing more confidence as of late, even going so far as to take a few ill-advised drives from the elbows or beyond. Trying to crossover Garnett in isolation is a bold move, but when you’re going like Splitter was I suppose you’re afforded a bit longer leash.
  4. Large scoring wings are going to be a problem. At times Green and Ginobili played solid defense on Pierce, who was ultimately just too big and too good for it to matter.
  5. Rajon Rondo puts up fantastic assist numbers, but how many are of the 20-foot pick and pop variety that teams are willing to concede to some extent? Tho numbers are nice, but some are also simply empty calories.
  • Bruno

    Great game, SF Diaw>> SF Green.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chapnis Luke Naylor

    Yay! El Conclusion is back.

  • Graham

    Yeah, it makes sense in a weird way if the opposing lineup allows it. The thoughts of a Duncan/Splitter/Diaw lineup is downright intriguing, though i am liking the potential of Duncan/Blair, Splitter/Diaw as our lineups.

    Splitter is answering all my questions i had going into the season. FT’s on the uptick, Fouls are down, and his energy and general game sense are all improved.

  • Len

    Is it too early to ask for Xmas presents yet? Because I know what I want this year. I want Manu to be Manu again, if only for the rest of this year. The end can’t be here yet for Manu, it just can’t. I need to savor vintage Manu one more year while I appreciate the fact that it’s the last season to do so.

  • Casey

    I would like to understand the Bonner DNPs… I understand his shortcomings but his +/- is invaluable. Just don’t play him in the playoffs!!

  • Bruno

    Bonner is fools gold, Pop finally gets it.
    The team has to learn how to play without him.

  • Gomezd

    Diaw was that strange sort of player that used to be able to play all 5 positions. Remember his Phoenix days? Rarely have I seen a player been able to play all over the place so well, remained me when Magic slotted into the 5 for the Lakers.

  • Bruno

    Bonner is fools gold, Pop finally gets it.
    The team has to learn how to play without him

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000113089142 David Salazar

    Splitter finally got the message about dunking instead of layups. Other than too many turnovers, great game.

  • Bruno

    Bonner doesn’t play well when it matters, Pop finally gets it.
    The team has to learn how to play without him

  • Bruno

    Someone delete the repeated replies please, the first one wasn’t showing then i made others, now there is multiple replies

  • Peter

    Great point about Rondos assists and the Cs offense. Strange to see so many of those long jumpers teams usually avoid.

    Also can’t believe he got an assist on that Terry three-dribble-and-chuck move. Nice player and all, but this streak feels like a sham

  • neverthehero

    at the team being 6-6 (the celtics), I can feel the assist numbers being the equivalent to RBI’s in baseball.

  • Nima K.

    Whut’s up Splitterrrrrr! Dude was on fire tonight. Was 23pts a Spurs career high for him?

  • Titletown99030507d

    I think Pop got the message last night. Splitter needs court time to get better especially with some starters and it showed. More time more improvement. Im sure TDBE would say it was a mirage. But I would like to say if that front court of Timmy, Blair, Diaw, and Splitter can be be intermixed quite often we could be seeing a whole lot of good passing and scoring. Towards the end of the game Garnett was really frustrated with that front court rotation. I’m impressed Pop.

  • DorieStreet

    Living out of state, I obviously don’t get to watch as many Spurs games as other fans. But this is the best Splitter has looked in a Spurs uniform–harking back to when I saw him in a international game before he arrived in SA.

  • DorieStreet

    I don’t think for once he displayed any confusion about what to do, and he was into mixing it up with the Celtics. I agree with you (and a linked article to a previous 48MOH post)–Pop has got to tinker and experiment with different lineups to get max efficiently. And improved defense and rebounding should always be the focus each game this season.

  • DorieStreet

    And stop being so careless with the ball—completed last year at 3rd with 13.6 per/ this season so far tied at 15th with 15.3 game.

  • DorieStreet

    Rondo probably would be traded if the other Celtic stars Pierce, Garnett) were not at the end of their careers.

  • DorieStreet

    He is really going to have to pace himself to be at his best come postseason.

  • TD BestEVER

    Actually I won’t say it was a Mirage – It was what happens when Our offense is running on all cylinders…… Our shots were falling so it stretched the defense and left open lanes for cutters….Splitter was on point in finding those lanes and cutting at the right time……. And he made all of his FT’s…… So great game last night from everyone……… AS long as POP doesn’t go back to trying to play 5 bigs there should be a good amount of minutes for everyone at this point because I don’t see Diaw being a starter anytime soon as long as DJB keeps playing well

  • Titletown99030507d

    I dont care who starts but that 3 big rotation of Timmy, Diaw, and Splitter at one point was interesting to watch. The way Pop was shuffling these 4 bigs continously may prove to wear out opposing front courts. (That is if things are clicking)
    To Blairs strengths he does well with Tony, Manu, and Timmy and Splitter clicks with Diaw, Manu, and even DeColo when hes on the court. Not sure but was there ever a Timmy, Blair, and Splitter rotation? Yes good job by all the bigs.

  • TD BestEVER

    Not to sure about the last rotation but Diaw plays a better 3 man than he does a 4 man…….. Seems likes he shoots with more confidence knowing that he is playing the SF position……. And as long as we don’t play teams with GREAT SF’s like OKC, Miami we should be able to get away with Diaw at the 3 some……

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=173600134 Ryan McShane

    Spurs played Bonner-Blair-Diaw against Denver in the last 5:24 of garbage time. Diaw was the 3 on both ends. It’s hard to say anything about those 5:24, but I wanted to see Blair play D on the 3. Blair did a great job on Carmelo the PF.