El Conclusion: San Antonio Spurs 104, Golden State Warriors 102

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San Antonio Spurs 104 Final
Recap | Box Score
102 Golden State Warriors
Boris Diaw, PF Shot Chart 32 MIN | 4-9 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | -4

Technically Boris had a chasedown block on Steph Curry late in this game, but let’s be honest. Boris had a head start. Either way, it was a great play and Diaw’s confidence on the offensive end late was a big reason the Spurs won this game. He didn’t panic and helped San Antonio to keep the ball moving and maintain flow. He had trouble with David Lee defensively, though.

Aron Baynes, PF Shot Chart 9 MIN | 1-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | -11

Well, I think a lot of us had high hopes that Baynes would get a lot of run in this game, but this wasn’t his type of game. Nothing about Aron Baynes screams “back-and-forth game with lots of shots.” He’s a bruiser and there was no place for his kind in Thursday night’s contest.

Kawhi Leonard, SF Shot Chart 35 MIN | 8-14 FG | 4-7 FT | 10 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 21 PTS | +4

He’s still extremely young, so I don’t want to say anything definitively, but I don’t think Kawhi has the mindset of a go-to scorer. He has stretches where he understands he needs to initiate the offense, but I don’t see him getting to the point where he’s going to be in attack mode for 48 minutes a night. Guys who can score efficiently and do a little bit of everything well are just as important.

Patty Mills, PG Shot Chart 34 MIN | 8-17 FG | 2-3 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 20 PTS | +10

Patty Mills has never met a shot he doesn’t like and I think that mentality was key for the Spurs to start this game. If San Antonio spent the first eight minutes of the night looking for someone to step up and shoot the ball, there’s no way in hell they win this game. Patty Mills came out from the opening tip looking for his shot and playing with confidence. It rubbed off on others. #PattyMillsShotCount: 17

Danny Green, SG Shot Chart 30 MIN | 4-14 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | -8

The shooting percentage wasn’t high, but Green hit a lot of the shots he normally does and they came at opportune times.

Matt Bonner, PF Shot Chart 13 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | +10

Seriously, three assists? Playmaker.

Jeff Ayres, PF Shot Chart 11 MIN | 2-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +5

The trouble he has catching a pass is amazing to me. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like it. Does he have the worst hands in the NBA?

Tiago Splitter, C Shot Chart 28 MIN | 1-7 FG | 2-3 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 4 PTS | +5

Got the game-winning tip-in and hit two of three free throws on the night. Defense was solid if unspectacular. Everyone in silver and black had trouble with David Lee, so I don’t fault Splitter specifically for that. Tiago was forced into a lot of dumb shots, though he hit the one that counted.

Cory Joseph, PG Shot Chart 14 MIN | 2-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 5 PTS | -5

HUGE 3-pointer to close the third quarter. It put the Spurs up eight and made the idea of San Antonio winning this game a real thing for the first time in the evening.

Nando de Colo, PG Shot Chart 6 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | +1

It’s probably not a good thing that Nando only played six minutes, all in the first half, in a game like this.

Marco Belinelli, SG Shot Chart 29 MIN | 10-16 FG | 4-4 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 28 PTS | +3

All of the pluses for Gelato. Patty and Kawhi carried a lot of the scoring load in the first half, but the second was about Marco. 28 points on 16 shots is awesome and even made a few defensive plays, including a crafty strip of Kent Bazemore in the corner that resulted in a turnover. At the time the Warriors were playing with a lot of energy and putting pressure on the Spurs. An unexpected turnover like that really kills momentum.

Gregg Popovich

C’mon. Got Duncan and Ginobili rest. Started Patty and gave the team a confident, energetic first few minutes. Never got too hot on the sidelines, giving the players something else to worry about. He managed this game well.

Three Things We Saw

  1. For the entire game it felt like the Spurs were teetering on the brink of disaster. They were having to work so hard to get just one decent look on the offensive end that I thought I was watching another Bulls game. San Antonio kept hitting just enough of those shots to hang around in the game and eventually build a lead, but there was never a feeling like the team was in rhythm and creating good offense. They just sort of survived.
  2. Without your stars, the margin for error becomes so much smaller and the Spurs managed that well. Players are suddenly forced into roles they’re not used to and that’s when you see guys look like they’re back in their CYO days, fumbling the ball around, dribbling off their own feet, etc. The Spurs had just enough players who were comfortable in their new skin for the evening that they were able to score 104 points.
  3. Was it a goaltend? Shit, I don’t know.
  • Daniel Chevez

    Ayers has an extra pair of feet instead of hands

  • Melbourne Spur

    Gotta love the highlights above – one Kawhi 3, and then Tiago’s tip-in are the only Spurs plays shown. Amazing how we still get shunned, but is there any of us that don’t actually like it now?
    I thought Patty and Marco were outstanding. Love games when our key guys sit because our role guys always seem to step up and have great games. Shows our depth.
    I think Ayres has to sit for now. He isn’t showing anything that warrants time. And for me, I can’t see what the rest of you do in Joseph. I know he is young and has potential based on that, but I can’t see where his upside is – he isn’t overly athletic, overly quick, overly big, he isn’t an outstanding shooter, ball handler or passer – I just don’t see it. He’ll get better with experience, but that only adds so much. I can’t see him exploding into this point guard that we will be lucky to have as Tony’s replacement when the time comes.
    Haven’t posted much this year, but am still reading after each game. I think I’m like many of the Spurs now where I am just kinda waiting for the playoffs.

  • Melbourne Spur

    Oh, and it was definitely a goal tend, but we’ll take it.

  • Anwar Winston

    No goaltending. It was coming out of the basket.

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  • rj

    I think patty has solidified his spot as the backup point. he plays with a lot of energy. joseph’s inability to bring the ball up the court was astounding.
    sticking it to TNT two years in a row. annual practice?

  • ThatBigGuy

    NBA Rules, Section I-A, Exception C: For goaltending to occur, the ball, in the judgment of the official, must have
    a chance to score.

    The ball was in the cylinder, but clearly on its way out, with absolutely no chance to score. The call was correct: no goaltending.

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  • Melbourne Spur

    I know we are now a game further on, but I think the ruling you are referring to is defensive goaltending. Offensively, the ball is not allowed to be in the cylinder at all. In international ball you can put that back in or clear it away on D, but not in the NBA. My thoughts anyway.

  • Phasteddie

    NBA Rule 11 covers both offensive and defensive interference-goaltending. Rule 11c is what that big guy is quoting from.