Originally Posted by tabspur
Manu pretty much carried them the first half. He did also hit a big 3 and a driving layup in the fourth. We had more issues with Timmy missing shot after shot in the fourth, whe we went four down. It wouldn't hurt to have Neal hit a jumper or 2, especially to make up for his lack of D, or have KY hit and outside shot. I like what Leonard is giving us, but he is starting to look hesitant on his shot. Our problem isn't Manu. It's exactly what happens in the playoffs. The teams that win have a role player or 2 step up.
I almost agree with you except that throughout the entire season we hear how important Manu is to the 2nd unit and he is. He's now a role player, he's not the starter for this team, he's the 2nd unit leader. He can't keep up with younger wings, and in crunch time he's almost becoming a liability. And if the Spurs are thinking that he HAS to be on the court in crunch time, then to me that's a problem.
I think it's tough for young players (Leonard and Green) to develop any
confidence in their abilities at the end of close games, if they're always going to be yanked for a 36 year old player whose peak years were at least 5 years ago.
At the end of games, it's Manu and not our all-star point guard bringing the ball up the court, at the end of games, it's Manu directing the offense instead of Tony, at the end of games, it's 36 year old Manu chasing 23 year old guards instead of our 23 year old athletic guards and small forwards chasing them.
I have a lot of admiration for what Manu did for the franchise, but at some point we have to stop focusing on what he used to be and instead look at what he is. He might hit the big 3 now and then, but the odds say a) he won't, b) he'll get hurt or c) he'll make a silly foul because he's slower than the person he's guarding.
The Spurs should
win this series, but if I take the emotion out of it, I sure wouldn't put money on them to do so. I said a long time ago, that this team was playing like a group that would have a tough time getting past the 2nd round and if you think about it, the should be down 3-1 in this series.