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Old 05-03-12, 11:39 PM
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ATHENEA ATHENEA is offline
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Spurs' D in crunchtime

Interesting quote about Spurs' D in crunchtime.
Quote:
But in crunch time, San Antonio’s defense has been ridiculously stingy (hat tip to Matt Moore of CBSSports.com for discovering this). In the last five minutes of games with a scoring margin of five or fewer points, San Antonio has yielded just 91.5 points per 100 possessions, the best mark in the league, according to NBA.com. Cut the time and margin to three minutes/three points, and the number drops to 78.1 points allowed per 100 possessions, also tops in the league.

How are the Spurs doing this? Two trends emerge: They don’t foul late, and their opponents are missing both threes and free throws at what is probably an unsustainable rate. Only the Lakers, Cavs and Celtics have sent teams to the line less often in late-game situations than the Spurs, and no team has allowed a lower three-point percentage. Teams are 9-of-50 from deep against the Spurs in the last five minutes when the scoring margin is five or fewer, and just 1-of-13 in the last three minutes of even tighter games (margin of three or fewer). Opponents are also shooting in the low-60-percent range on the rare free throws the Spurs do allow.

Being ahead so often obviously helps the Spurs here. They don’t have to foul intentionally as often as other teams, and some desperation, late-game heaves have contributed to the low opponent shooting percentage from deep. But the numbers also dovetail with some of Popovich’s core philosophies on defense: Don’t foul and run teams off the three-point line.
I'm looking for the source but feel free to post Matt Moore's article
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