In what was a complete massacre on Sunday night, the Miami Heat’s second half destruction of the Spurs helped tie the NBA Finals series at 1-1. Now that the initial shock and anger from last night’s game has faded, we can discuss the game in more detail and issue out some game grades. It’s time report card time.
Who’s Hot: Did you guys know Danny Green is a good three point shooter? Apparently the Heat didn’t, as they left him open to swish all five of his attempts from beyond the arch. And he managed a lovely finger roll at the basket, as he scored 17 points on a perfect 6-for-6 shooting night.
Who’s Not: Kawhi Leonard’s offense completely abandoned him last night. Missed shots in the lane, missed midrange jumpers that he usually hits with ease. It was dreadful. He did have 14 rebounds, which were huge, but his dreadful shot chart negates that:
Turning Point: As we stated above, Danny Green had a gorgeous finger roll to put the Spurs up 62-61 with 3:50 left in the third quarter. After two Heat offensive rebounds, Mario Chalmers made a layup and drew a (ticky tack) foul call, for the three point play. Miami then turned that 64-62 lead and extended it to 10 points to end the third quarter. You know the rest.
Up Next: Only one day off in between Games 2 and 3. The Spurs get a chance at redemption on Tuesday at the AT&T Center. And as stated in last night’s game recap: Since 1985 when the NBA switched to a 2-3-2 format in the finals, teams that have won Game 3 in a series tied 1-1, have won the series 11 out of 12 times. So needless to say, Game 3 is crucial to San Antonio.
C Tiago Splitter | 4 points (2-5 shooting), 1 rebound, 1 assist, 1 block
PF Tim Duncan | 9 points (3-13 shooting), 11 rebounds, 1 assist
Post game, Duncan said that the Heat are giving him the looks he wants, he’s just not knocking them down. Miami does seem to be giving him plenty of space and jumpers, but he was even missing shots inside the paint last night. It doesn’t look like Duncan is tired, his shot just isn’t falling. Maybe that changes with the series shifting to San Antonio.
SF Kawhi Leonard | 9 points (4-12 shooting), 14 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal
If we take out Leonard’s horrible shooting performance, he actually played well. He managed to maintain LeBron James in the first half, holding the King to just nine points. And he was phenomenal on the glass with eight offensive rebounds and six defensive rebounds. But his shooting performance takes him down a complete letter grade.
SG Danny Green | 17 points (6-6 shooting), 1 rebound, 1 assist, 1 block
Danny Green went full flamethrower last night. It disappoints me that even with how on fire he was, he didn’t get more looks in the second half. The Spurs tried too hard to establish Tony and Tim on a night when their shots were off and committed plenty of mental mistakes in the process. Win as a team, lose as a team. But Danny should be nothing but proud of his performance.
PG Tony Parker | 13 points (5-14 shooting), 3 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 block
The Heat did a great job of playing Parker aggressively in Game 2. Limiting his shots at the rim and forcing him to turn the ball over five times. Tony still managed to get free a couple times for open shots, but nothing wanted to go down for him.
Bench | 32 points (12-30 shooting), 14 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals, 1 block
Manu Ginobili was awful. He couldn’t shoot, he was turning the ball over and looked like he had forgotten how to dribble. Gary Neal played well offensively, but losing Ray Allen and Mike Miller on defense can’t continue to happen. And with the game out of reach, we saw Tracy McGrady, who missed his only attempted shot.