Official Spurs at Lakers Game Thread Tuesday (9:30 PM)
9:30 PM CT
San Antonio (6 - 1)
LA Lakers (3 - 4)
By JORDAN GARRETSON
(AP) -- The Los Angeles Lakers will no longer be searching for a new coach when they take the floor on Tuesday night, but their newest employee won't be on the bench quite yet.
Two days after hiring Mike D'Antoni as their new head coach, the Lakers will face the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center.
Los Angeles made the hire late Sunday night, though it remains uncertain when D'Antoni - who underwent knee replacement surgery recently - will join the team. His first game likely won't be until at least Friday against Phoenix, one of his former teams.
"Dr. (Jerry) Buss, Jim Buss and Mitch Kupchak unanimously agreed that Mike was the best coach for this roster at this time," Lakers spokesman John Black said.
D'Antoni most recently coached the New York Knicks before resigning in March. His hiring by Los Angeles brings him together with Kobe Bryant, who idolized the former Olimpia Milano star while growing up in Italy.
The new coach will likely have to wait a while to utilize point guard Steve Nash, who is expected to miss at least another week due to a small fracture in his leg. Nash, who won two NBA MVP awards while running D'Antoni's offense with the Suns, has missed the last five games.
The Lakers also met with former coach Phil Jackson on Saturday, but decided to go with D'Antoni.
Los Angeles (3-4) has already smoothed things out a bit after a 1-4 start under former coach Mike Brown - their worst beginning to a season since 1993-94. The Lakers are 2-0 under interim coach Bernie Bickerstaff, though those wins came at home against Golden State and Sacramento, teams with a combined 5-9 record.
Dwight Howard tallied 23 points and 18 rebounds in a 103-90 win over the Kings on Sunday.
"I've been around a lot of teams, and this is the consummate professional group," Bickerstaff said. "No one's naive. They've been around a long time and we've been around a long time, so they understand."
They could face a greater challenge against a Spurs team coming to Los Angeles to finish a four-game road trip, although San Antonio hasn't been playing the polished brand of basketball that its 6-1 record might indicate.
The Spurs averaged 13.8 turnovers in their first four games - all victories, three of them at home - but they have at least 20 in each game on this trip. Opponents have taken advantage, averaging 100.3 points after San Antonio's first four foes averaged 89.5.
The Spurs needed a career-high 27 points from Gary Neal - including 20 in the second half - to manage a 112-109 win at Portland on Saturday. Gregg Popovich's team trailed by as many as 14 points in the third quarter.
Neal played 32 minutes, almost twice as many as he averaged in the first six games, as point guard Tony Parker sat out with a flu virus that has been plaguing the Spurs. Stephen Jackson missed their win at Sacramento on Friday with the bug and Tim Duncan has also been affected, though he hasn't missed any games.
"He carried us on his back," Popovich said about Neal. "Sometimes a player will do that, and he picked a good time for it."
The Spurs and Lakers have split their last 10 meetings, with San Antonio taking two of three last season - including a 112-91 road victory April 17. Parker had 29 points on 14-of-20 shooting along with 13 assists in that game, which Bryant missed with an injury.
Steve Blake out against San Antonio Spurs
By Eric Pincus
November 12, 2012, 5:42 p.m.
The Lakers have announced that Steve Blake has suffered a minor abdominal strain and is listed a day to day.
Blake left midway in the first quarter Sunday night in the Lakers' 103-90 victory over the Sacramento Kings.
The Lakers will have to face the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night without Blake, who will sit out after his ultrasound exam by Dr. Steven Yoon revealed the strain.
Steve Nash is still unavailable with a non-displaced leg fracture, which leaves second-year point guard Darius Morris and veteran Chris Duhon.
Morris has been ahead of Duhon in the rotation, which suggests he would get the call to start against Tony Parker of the Spurs.
Through five games, Morris is averaging 6.6 points while shooting 45.5% from the field and 45.5% from three-point range. Blake has averaged 5.1 points on 35.3% and 40%, respectively.
Duhon has made only three appearances for a total of 20 minutes this season.
Spurs TEAM defense wins!
Despite the FTL huge home crowd and the hype from change of Lakers coaching Spurs stay focused and win because the Spurs will play better!
Hope we have TP back also!
Go Spurs Go!
Don't stop get it get it
How do you prep for a game like this? With all the events going on in LA, it seems uncertain who or what they are up against.
LOS ANGELES — The Spurs’ infirmary is once again a lonely place.
After a stomach virus raced through a quarter of the roster — debilitating Tim Duncan, Stephen Jackson, Matt Bonner and Tony Parker for the better part of a week — all hands reportedly will be on deck for tonight’s game against the Lakers at Staples Center.
Doesn't matter who's coaching....Spurs bring it tonight :rock :rock
do not be surprised if Pop goes with Leonard roaming a little bit and leaving World Peace open for jumpers, in case any Spurs need help with their man. this is the most likely thing in my opinion.
i don't know how confident Pop would be to go with the Bowen/Nash matchup and switch Parker to Kobe and Green to World Peace while Leonard guards Nash.
Coach could go with a 2005 Suns defense strategy and give them the 1-5 pick and roll while staying with everyone else. you know that would definitely irk Kobe if he's not a part of the offense.
Pop can still try changing the 1-2-3 schemes, although it'd be unnecessary. Pop will probably go with a double team then with Parker and Leonard on opposite sides of each other trying to cheat for steals.
the irony of this game is a Pop team will probably (should anyway) run a D'Antoni team out of the gym tonight.
Report: Lakers test trade market for Blake, Duhon. No takers yet. Shocking!!
Steve Nash being reunited with Mike D’Antoni is not happening as soon as Lakers fans (or D’Antoni) would like — Nash said on Tuesday he could be out another week or two as his leg heals.
But that isn’t stopping the Lakers from shopping around two of the other point guards on the roster.
The report is from Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated.
Related link: Mike D’Antoni a better long-term choice than Phil Jackson | ProBasketballTalk
Spurs win in 7 secs or less.
:evil FTL :evil
Kobe got beat!!!
Well for all the noise and distraction the Spurs pulled it out and taht's all that counts - Go Green!!!
Two things I enjoyed about the game besides the W:
Games are always easier when the shots are going down and they were not but that is often the case against the taller teams with talent. The Spurs played stellar team defense to compensate.
The Spurs seem to have an arsenal of buzzer beater plays which was demonstrated by Danny Green's play last night and Parker's play against the Thunder. They won't always go down like they did in those 2 games but the Spurs seem to be ready to execute them well.
thats what i was thinking the other day: last year winning was by a big margin, and young guns was used to play pressureless at the end of games... thing that doesnt end well in playoffs against thunder... 7 games this year and 2 wins in the last seconds so far...
I liked seeing Tiago Start against the taller line up, this team is pretty deep if we can interchange players on a nightly basis and still win.
WOW!!! JUST WOW!!! That was a GREAT WIN for Da Spurs! :hat :rock
Became my favorite player now.
The kid has been nothing but BRILLIANT on both ends of the floor.
He played AWESOME! Let's hope he keeps it up! He deserves to be an All Star soon! I am voting him in my write up every day.
And Mr. LEONARD is an AMAZING talent. I mean My Man Bruce Bowen must have been watching and saying to himself. Wow this kid is going to be better than me...... Sean Elliott already said it that Leonard is going to be much better than him. Props to Mr. LEONARD for a HUGE D and some glimpses of brilliance on Offense.
Those new guys missed Training Camp last year and they did good but this year they are showing GREAT PROGRESS and they will be both Huge come PO.
Tiago Splitter came up BIG at the end of the game. I hope Pop can un leach TIAGO... Because this kid if he gets MAD and Angry.... I can feel the BEAST coming and he can be AMAZING!
Tony Parker is DEADLY when he is ON!
Tony lead the team with his aggressive attacks and determination and poise! :hat
Well done TP! Without TP this game was questionable.
Tim Duncan has KILLER INSTINCT... Don't you ever doubt his power or he burns you! He is the anchor on Defense and he can punish people for guarding him too!!! Hope he continues this great combination!
Manu despite less points scored HIS DEFENSE eas HUGE!
Manu does those little disruptive things that KILL other teams! Very ANNOYING and Very Under Rated! MAN if this MANU can only get his shooting rhythm back This whole team would be SCARY! I am so GLAD Manu played we were told he was doubtful before the game. Hope he gets near 100% soon!
Well all the hype still is with the Lakers of course despite them losing! The sports gurus on espn radio today were saying when D'Antoni comes back and Nash is back that Lakers team would be unstoppable. And Pop's after the game last night said to reporter is MANU returns and Nash would be there of course both teams would be better off. So it is to be seen!!!!
Man. The only thing worse than getting up at 5 to avoid Houston traffic is missing a win against the lakers in the last 10 seconds the night before.
Yea Google Now which gives me the score 2 swipes into the day.
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