May 14, 2013; San Antonio, TX, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) and San Antonio Spurs guard Danny Green (4) during the second half in game five of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at the AT
It was a pivotal game five for the San Antonio Spurs and with what has transpired in previous games, fans were waiting and hoping for them to have ‘that game’. You know what I am talking about. The game where the Spurs just do everything right to the point of one stating, “They are putting on a clinic”.
Tuesday night at the AT&T Center the San Antonio Spurs did just that. The big three did what they had to do, even when Duncan had a mediocre night, the role players came in and made the most of their opportunities, importantly, the defense shutdown of both Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson has continued.
May 14, 2013; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs small forward Kawhi Leonard (2) takes as shot against the Golden State Warriors in the fourth quarter in game five of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at the AT
Where to begin. I have been waiting for this game to come during this series. Game one, we showed the heart and determination of a championship team that never quits until that final horn, winning in double-overtime
sent a shock to the Warriors as they knew they had to play on top of their game, and smart. That is what they did in game two when Thompson decided to go all-world on the Spurs scoring 35 points.
Adjustments were made and games three, four and five, Thompson was not much of a threat. Curry also has been held in check so to speak. Yes, he does hit a long three here and there and boosts his team up, but what the Spurs have done, especially Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard on the Warriors to stars is just unbelievable. In game five, you could see the frustration forming on the faces of both Thompson and Curry. They were a combined 6-for-22 from the floor for 13 points. There were no injuries to assess for the shooting woes of both Thompson and Curry. Curry actually stated he had felt as good as he has all series, and was ‘ready to go’.
Offensively, the Spurs played, well, like the Spurs of old. When they can control the tempo of the game, it fits right into their gameplan. That is one great thing about the Spurs. I may be a little biased here but when you have a point guard like Tony Parker whom can dictate the way the game goes and leaves it in his hands, good things happen. Green said in the presser after the game that when Parker plays well, the team plays well. That statement is
May 14, 2013; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker (9) drives to the basket against the Golden State Warriors during the second half in game five of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at the AT
so true. Parker did what he wanted in game five. He drove into the lane with ease hitting bucket after bucket. At one point, it looked like a instant replay of a play before when he drove in for a layup. His determination and aggression in game five rubbed off onto his playoffs.
As for the role players, what more could you ask for. Manu Ginobili added 10, Boris Diaw 8, and Cory Joseph 7. Joseph was getting so much attention on twitter it was just amazing to see. From the guy that played most of his minutes in the NBA Developmental League to playing time in the playoffs, he has made most of his time when called upon. Popovich has so much confidence in Joseph that he put him in the game early and he did not disappoint. He played just under 14-minutes and scored 7 points and 3 assists. What the box score doesn’t show is the defense in which he played on the Warriors guards. What he does on the defensive end and keeping his head into the game is something great to see from such a young player.
Once the Spurs went back to their style of play, ball movement, letting the game come to them and getting everyone involved has proven to be this teams greatest asset. Why they shy away from this to play another style is beyond me. Lets just hope that come game six on Thursday, they continue the play that portrayed in game five.