Spurs vs. Cavs: #FullSquad hits the road

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All things considered, the San Antonio Spurs were a pretty good basketball team from January 4-February 28, the period they were without a variety of key players. They went 16-8 in that span and with just one losing streak. Pretty good stuff.

Still, Sunday night’s game against Dallas gave us a taste of what we’ve been missing over the last seven weeks or so. The full squad was back together thanks to Tony Parker’s brilliant return.

Parker looked sharp, scoring 22 points on 10-for-15 shooting and handing out seven assists. It was as sharp athletically as he’s looked since early in the season. He and the rest of the Spurs will get another chance to work on that chemistry that inherently would be less than great with so many guys missing so much time. Make no mistake, tonight’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers is about preparing for Thursday’s game against Miami, getting more and more in-sync for a team that looks like a juggernaut right now. However, there’s a difference between preparing for Thursday and looking ahead to Thursday, and the Spurs can’t do the latter.

Look, the Cavs are a terrible basketball team. 24th in offensive efficiency and 19th in defensive efficiency. Still, the game is in Cleveland and the Cavs are desperate to make the playoffs. Best way to give yourself a shot of doing that is to win home games, especially against teams you’re not supposed to beat. Just last week they went into Oklahoma City and dropped 114 points on the Thunder. On any given night, this is a team with the capability of catching fire, especially if you sleep on them. Generally speaking the Spurs aren’t a group that sleeps on opponents, but it’s easy to see how it can happen. Cleveland a one game road trip against a terrible team with the defending champs heading to San Antonio two days later.

Couple of things that happened Sunday night that were fun to see. First, the starting five that blitzed through the Western Conference playoffs last year was back together. Hopefully we see more of this moving forward. Second, we got to see a complete Belinobili reunion. It wasn’t the best showing for the duo, Belinelli in particular, but you can just see other teams’ second units don’t completely know how to handle both players on offense. If the Spurs can come close to replicating last year’s starting five and mix it with this year’s bench crew led by Manu and Marco, then they’ll be extremely tough to beat moving forward.

You can catch tonight’s game from Quicken Loans Arena on Fox Sports Southwest at 6 p.m. central time.

All stats courtesy of ESPN.