April 15, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich smiles from the bench against the Golden State Warriors during the fourth quarter at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the San Antonio Spurs 116-106. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
The San Antonio Spurs are 4-6 in their last 10 games and haven’t won a road game since February 24th, versus the Suns. You can tell from the picture above how concerned Gregg Popovich is.
Monday night saw the Spurs b-squad get a chance to shine, as San Antonio has nothing to play for with the 2nd seed completely locked up. Golden State however, is still playing for playoff position and probably wants to avoid the Spurs in the first round at all costs.
April 15, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; A referee motions for the score behind Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry (30) after scoring a three point basket against the San Antonio Spurs during the third quarter at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the San Antonio Spurs 116-106. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Who’s Hot: Everyone knows how Steph Curry can turn into a human torch in an instant, and he did just that. With this seven 3-pointers in the game, Curry is just one behind Ray Allen’s single-season NBA record of 269. Curry also managed to completely embarrass and undress Gary Neal in the first quarter.
Who’s Not: Danny Green is already in prime playoff form. He missed EVERYTHING last night. Granted that he only played 19 minutes, but Green’s 0-5 performance is not what you want heading into the post-season.
Turning Point: With 9:29 left in the fourth quarter, Nando De Colo had his only 3-point field goal of the night to bring the Spurs within one point, 88-87. Then Steph Curry went en fuego, scoring 11 of his 35 points to spur a 19-0 in four minutes that basically buried the great Spurs effort.
Up Next: The Spurs get one last game to work out all their kinks before it counts, with the disappointing Minnesota Timberwolves coming into town on Wednesday night. It’s been hinted that Manu Ginobili will attempt to play, but there is no official word yet. Tip-off is at 7 PM CST from the AT&T Center.
PG Cory Joseph | 10 points (4-11 shooting), 6 rebounds, 8 assistsSomething I love about CoJo’s game dating back to his D-League days, is that he always seems to stuff the stat sheet. Not sure how many triple-doubles he had in Austin, but he contributes in every way possible. He hasn’t developed as quickly as George Hill, but he also hasn’t been given many opportunities. And Monday night he was faced with the difficult task of guarding Golden State’s backcourt.
SG Danny Green | 0 points (0-5 shooting), 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 19 minutesI don’t have to say anything. I just hope Danny Green is less Icy and more Hot in the playoffs. But for Monday night?
SF Matt Bonner | 13 points (6-10 shooting), 4 rebounds, 1 blockThe Red Mamba started at small forward in place of Kawhi Leonard, and he wasn’t bad. The shooting is there and Bonner is playing some above-average defense. With Diaw being out 3 to 4 weeks, Bonner’s production will be crucial come playoff time. Diaw may be the better playmaker, but Bonner won’t hesitate to shoot when he’s open. Something I loathe about Boris.
PF Tiago Splitter | 8 points (4-9 shooting), 7 rebounds, 2 assistsFun fact: Tiago Splitter has played in every game this season. Splitter’s gotta be wondering who the hell he has to talk to, to get a day off around here. But Pop did a good job of limiting Tiago to only 19 minutes. If only these two teams could match up in the playoffs, because I have a feeling that Splitter would love to abuse David Lee.
C DeJuan Blair | 14 points (7-15 shooting), 5 reboundsAsk and ye shall receive. More like complain on Instagram, delete it, and then receive, but whatever. Blair got 31 minutes on Monday night and did the bare minimum with them. He was rarely in position to rebound or play defense, getting abused by Festus Ezeli and Carl Landry. DeJuan Blair also had a team worse and game worse +/- of -20.
Bench | 61 points (24-48 shooting), 14 rebounds, 19 assists, 8 stealsEven though the rebounding numbers for the bench are awful, given how many combined minutes were played, Aron Baynes was really the only big off the bench last night. Mills and Neal went absolutely H.A.M. (people still use HAM, right? No? Damn.) off the bench with 48 points on 61% shooting. Meanwhile, De Colo had a below average shooting night, but had 9 assists and 5 steals in just 29 minutes. Solid effort from the two Aussies, Neal and Mini Manu.