San Antonio Spurs Fall To Alba Berlin In Preseason Opener

By George Middleton

The San Antonio Spurs played their first of seven preseason games earlier Wednesday as they took on Berlin. While the Spurs should’ve clearly blown out the overseas team, it was Air Berlin that came out on top in shocking manner. The Spurs fell at the buzzer 94-93 on Jamel Mclean’s running back shot after a Tim Duncan turnover. It was a strange ending for a Spurs team that never beats themselves, as they held a four point lead with 10 seconds.

Tony Parker was sensational as he scored 28 points in 34 minutes. He went 8-13 from the field and 11-13 from the charity stripe. Tim Duncan finished with a double double (14 points and 10 rebounds) in 32 minutes. Rising star Kawhi Leonard also played well, as he finished with 14 points, seven rebounds, and four steals.

The Spurs had an uncharacteristic 22 turnovers and were out rebounded 36-33. Marco Belinelli struggled from the field as he went 1-9, but he did have four assists. Manu Ginobili also played after sitting out for a portion of the summer, with a fibula injury. He finished with seven points in 21 minutes. Rookie Kyle Anderson didn’t play and undrafted rookie Bryce Cotton played five minutes, going scoreless.

The Spurs take on Fenerbahce Ulker on Saturday at Ulker Sports Arena in Istanbul, Turkey.