El Conclusion: San Antonio Spurs 114, Miami Heat 104
|Tim Duncan, PF 38 MIN | 7-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 12 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 1 TO | 17 PTS | +2
We’ve yet to have a monster game from Duncan, but 17 points on 10 shots, 12 rebounds and three blocks is a helluva game. Any time you get that kind of production from arguably your fourth best player on the night, you’re probably gonna win. /Hubie’d
|Kawhi Leonard, SF 33 MIN | 6-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 16 PTS | +2
Similar to Duncan, Leonard put up great numbers in what will probably be an overlooked performance. The best way to describe Leonard’s night was timely. He didn’t string a lot of plays together, but he made an impact in the right moments.
|Tony Parker, PG 36 MIN | 10-14 FG | 6-8 FT | 1 REB | 5 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 26 PTS | -1
If Parker’s hamstring is still bothering him, it was hard to tell on this night. I didn’t notice that his burst or separation was particular limited in Game 5. Parker had a an efficient night scoring as well with 26 points on 14 shots.
|Manu Ginobili, SG 33 MIN | 8-14 FG | 7-8 FT | 2 REB | 10 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 24 PTS | +19
Hey there vintage Manu, good to see you. If this was Manu Ginobili’s last home game in a Spurs uniform (not saying it is, just saying it could be), this was a hell of a way to go out. In the starting lineup for the first time this season, Ginobili led the charge for San Antonio. You knew at least one game like this was coming from Manu in the Finals. Luckily for San Antonio it was Game 5.
|Danny Green, SG 39 MIN | 8-15 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 2 TO | 24 PTS | +6
If the Spurs win this series and Danny Green wins the Finals MVP, it’ll be a testament to the Spurs’ system more than anything else. This run he’s on is incredible and with the way he carries himself behind the scenes, it’s a pleasure to watch.
|Boris Diaw, C 27 MIN | 0-1 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 1 PTS | +6
Boris Diaw submitted what could be considered the best one-point performance in NBA playoff history. He played incredible defense on LeBron James for long stretches of this game and moved the ball well in the offense. His impact after not playing in Game 3 has been an incredibly important development.
|Tiago Splitter, C 10 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 4 PTS | +6
With the Spurs going small, Splitter has gone from Duncan’s big man partner to his backup center. To Splitter’s credit, he submitted a solid performance after Game 4’s nightmare.
|Gary Neal, PG 21 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | +17
Quiet night from gunner Gary Neal. That he was surplus to requirements is a good sign for San Antonio.
The move to start Manu Ginobili was the right one. Gary Neal has been a bigger spark plug off the bench in this series than Manu. It may have gotten Manu going (we’ll see) and it made the defensive matchups better for the Spurs.
Four Things We Saw
- Turnovers were still a problem for the Spurs in this one, they damn near led to a fourth quarter collapse, but some timely shooting from Green and others stymied the Heat run. Had San Antonio not shot 60 percent from the field in Game 5, this series might be 3-2 the other way.
- Patty Mills, who’s out for the rest of the Finals after surgery to remove an abscess between two of his toes, decided against sitting behind the bench in his business casual and instead sat on the floor next to the bench so he could be an active towel waver. He limped his way to be one of the first to greet teammates when they came off the floor during timeouts. How this guy didn’t win the NBA’s new Teammate of the Year award is beyond me.
- Chants of Manu rained down at the AT&T Center several times during Game 5. You’ll often get MVP chants when a player is at the free throw line, but you rarely ever get chants of a particular player’s name. I think plenty were aware of the uncertainty regarding Ginobili’s future and if this was his swan song at home, he went out with style. San Antonio loves them some Manu Ginobili.
- Lost in the shuffle of Miami’s undefeated record in the playoffs after a loss (6-0) is that the Spurs are now 5-0 in the postseason following a defeat. Basically, this series is destined to go to Game 7.