(2) SAN ANTONIO SPURS (58-24, 5-0) VS. (6) GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (47-35, 4-3)
WEDNESDAY, MAY 8, 2013
8:30 P.M. CT
PLAYOFF GAME #6 | WC SEMIFINALS GAME #2 | HOME GAME #4
TV: TNT | RADIO: WOAI 1200/KCOR 1350 AM
Playoff Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. Golden State Warriors
Darius Soriano May 5, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT
San Antonio: 58-24, two seed in the West
Golden State: 47-35, six seed in the West
San Antonio: Swept the Los Angeles Lakers 4-0
Golden State: Beat the Denver Nuggets 4-2
The teams split the series, with both teams winning their two home games. In both Spurs’ losses, they were on the second night of a back to back including their second to last game of the season where Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili all sat out. In one of the Warriors two losses, Stephen Curry didn’t play with ankle injury.
On the Warriors’ side, David Lee is still hobbled by his torn hip flexor. And while he saw some game action in game 6 versus the Nuggets, even Mark Jackson acknowledged that was more for inspiration than as a real weapon. Lee’s not expected to play a significant role this series.
For the Spurs, Tiago Splitter is sidelined with a bad ankle and may return mid-way through this series. Boris Diaw is also still out after having a cyst removed from his spine, but the original 3-4 week timeline for his return means he could potentially return this round if everything goes as planned.
OFFENSE/DEFENSE RANKINGS (points per 100 possession) – PLAYOFFS ONLY
San Antonio: Offense 111.0 (1st in the post season), Defense 90.6 (1st in the post season)
Golden State: Offense 107.7 (5th in the post season), Defense 102.4 (9th in the post season)
THREE KEYS TO THE SERIES:
Can Stephen Curry stay hot?: There’s no denying the damage Curry did against the Nuggets. He created his own shot from behind the arc, took the ball to the rim when defenders tried to take away his jumper, and made plays for teammates when Denver committed extra defenders to slowing him down. The Nuggets, however, didn’t have a great perimeter defender to throw on Curry after deploying Andre Iguodala on Klay Thompson and Jarrett Jack.
Will the Spurs make the same mistake by putting Tony Parker on Curry while Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard guard the Warriors’ other perimeter threats? The answer to this question will play a major role in how much space Curry has to operate on the perimeter and the quality of the shots he has available to him. If Green and Leonard spend most of their time chasing Curry, they can do a better job using length to contest his jumpshot an bother his handle when he works in isolation. But if Parker is put on an island or asked to defend through multiple picks, Curry may just start the second round where he ended the first: lighting it up.
Andrew Bogut‘s defense: While Curry may be the most important Warrior on offense, Bogut is clearly that player on defense. Against the Nuggets there wasn’t an interior threat to occupy the big Australian and he used that freedom to blow up pick and rolls and contest shots at the rim. Against the Spurs, though, Bogut will have his hands full defending Tim Duncan in the post while also having to provide help defense against a motion heavy attack that moves the ball to the open man expertly.
Bogut will not only need to defend Duncan without fouling, but will need to do so from the post all the way out to 18 feet where Timmy can effectively hit the spot up jumper. Further, he’ll need to wall off Parker and Manu Ginobili when they work in isolation and out of the pick and roll to deter shots at the rim. If Bogut can do all these things for heavy minutes, he could turn the tip the balance of the series. If he can’t, the Spurs’ machine will gain momentum and roll over a Dubs’ defense that simply doesn’t have the man power to defend all over the floor without their defensive ace of a big man.
The Spurs front court players not named Duncan: Against the Lakers, you’d have thought the Spurs’ front court would have been severely tested matching up with Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard. However, due to the Lakers dearth of guard talent the Spurs simply crowded the paint and made life awful for the Lakers’ big man duo. Taking this same defensive approach this series isn’t possible against a Warriors’ team who has so much perimeter firepower. And while the Warriors don’t have the post up talent the Lakers do, Carl Landry and Bogut aren’t slouches down low. Add in Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green as a small ball power forwards, and that’s a nice foursome who can hurt a defense in a variety of ways.
Meanwhile the Spurs are thin up front with Splitter and Diaw ailing, leaving only Duncan, DeJuan Blair, and Matt Bonner as regular rotation players at power forward and center. Duncan, of course, is a defensive monster and will be fine with whatever match up he’s tasked with. But can Bonner or Blair deal with Landry in the post? Can they out muscle Festus Ezili on the offensive glass? Can they hedge and recover back to the perimeter when Green and Barnes are hovering around arc looking to shoot open jumpers or slide with them when they attack off the dribble? Maybe the Spurs end up going small in this series, but even that may cause some issues as Stephen Jackson was released before the playoffs and Tracy McGrady is fresh off a first round that only saw him get garbage minutes in the clinching game.
The Spurs weren’t tested in the first round and will have had nearly a week off since by the time this series starts on Monday. Meanwhile the Warriors are riding the wave of winning a hard fought series, having sharpened their game and found combinations of players to step up when needed most. That said, while rust might play a factor at the start of game one, I also expect the Spurs’ extra preparation to show up from the outset of the series.
The Spurs’ offense is a well oiled machine and asking the Warriors to slow it down consistently is asking a bit too much. Look for Parker and Ginobili to have success against perimeter defenders who aren’t known for locking down their opponents. Both Parker and Ginobili have the ability to get into the paint and when they do they will create the types open looks Green, Gary Neal, Leonard, and Bonner thrive on.
Also look for Duncan to continue his strong play from round one against Andrew Bogut and Festus Ezeli. Timmy has found the range on his jumper and has proven that when defenders try to close out on him he still has the ability to put the ball on the floor and either finish at the rim or draw fouls when attacking. If he can keep the Warriors’ bigs off balance in the manner he did the Lakers’, he can give his team an offensive diversity that is difficult to match up with.
It’s not like the Warriors are helpless here, though. They have the type of shooting and overall talent to give the Spurs issues, especially if they can get into the open court and play offense before the defense is fully set. If Curry and Jack can push the tempo and create open looks for themselves and Thompson while the Spurs are in scramble mode, they can hit enough shots to keep them in games. Furthermore, Landry offers a unique match up issue for the Spurs especially when he’s flanked by shooters. If he can score in the post against Bonner and Blair when both team’s second units are in the game, the Spurs may have to double team to slow him down and that will only create open looks for Golden State’s outside shooters.
The Warriors’ main issue, however, is that they seem to struggle mightily when playing in San Antonio. They’ve not won in the Spurs’ arena during the Tim Duncan era and that doesn’t bode well for them in a series in which the other team has home court advantage. Of course many of those losses have little to do with the current version of the Dubs, but the fact remains that the you can’t expect the Spurs to beat themselves and simply give away a game through poor decision making or erratic play. No, the Warriors will have to out execute them down the stretch and based off what we saw towards the end of the Nuggets series, I don’t see that happening.
Maybe the Warriors get hot for a game or two, potentially even stealing a game in San Antonio. But, the Spurs discipline on both sides of the ball will wear the Warriors down over the course of the series. And while Mark Jackson was very good in making adjustments to out-coach George Karl, I don’t see him doing the same to Gregg Popovich. Spurs in 6.
Last edited by Eddy from Austin; 05-08-13 at 09:18 AM.
WOW Spurs had been waiting so long for the second round opponent team.
Now it is going to be every other night Spurs play starting Monday!!
I am feeling confident Spurs are rested and ready to FIGHT those Warriors...
Spurs win game one at Home Sweet Home!
Close win and Spurs will have to show GSW who the boss at home and will get the W!!!!!!!!!!!!
Spurs OWN GSW....
All Spurs players are now Ready to shift to the NEXT LEVEL Second Round and pick it up and Rise up!!
Go Spurs Go
Lets Win Game 1!!!!
Go Spurs Go! LOVING our SPURS MOOOOOOREEEE & MOOOOOREEE
The NBA has just released the rest of the SPURS-GS schedule
Game 1-Mon in SA-8:30 PM
Game 2-Wed in SA-8:30 PM
Game 3-Fri in Oak-9:30 pm
Game 4-Sun in Oak-2:30 pm-Live on KSAT 12
Game 5-Tues May 14 in SA-8:30 pm
Game 6-Thur May 16 in Oak-TBD
Game 7-Sun May 19 in SAT-TBD
I'm pumped!!!! Spurs will probably be a little rusty in the 1st half. I'm gussing that they overwelm the Warriors in 2nd half due to playoff experience. Spurs will run away with an easy win!
I think he's going to be a star. And as time goes on, he'll be the face of the Spurs, I think.--- Coach Pop on Leonard
Box Score of the last time The Warriors won in San Antonio
San Antonio on Feb. 14, 1997
WARRIORS FG FT Reb
Min M-A M-A O-T A PF TP
Mullin 32 7-12 2-3 1-3 5 3 18
Smith 45 6-20 8-8 4-13 1 0 20
Spencer 34 3-6 1-2 4-11 1 4 7
Sprewell 46 12-22 5-5 0-4 7 2 32
Armstrong 19 2-6 2-2 0-2 1 1 7
Coles 29 3-6 2-2 0-6 5 2 9
DeClercq 5 1-2 0-0 0-1 0 2 2
Price 20 4-8 0-0 0-2 4 1 11
Royal 8 0-1 2-2 1-3 1 2 2
Owes 2 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 2 0
Totals 240 38-83 22-24 10-45 25 19 108
S.A. FG FT Reb
Min M-A M-A O-T A PF TP
Williams 15 3-9 2-2 2-2 1 3 8
Herrera 29 3-11 3-3 4-10 0 2 9
Anderson 38 2-9 3-6 6-17 0 1 7
Maxwell 31 4-14 4-6 0-2 1 2 14
Johnson 37 1-3 0-0 0-1 11 3 2
Del Negro 24 4-8 3-4 1-3 1 2 11
Wilkins 32 8-17 5-7 1-5 1 3 22
Feick 10 2-4 1-2 3-3 1 0 6
Alexander 24 6-11 1-1 3-4 1 2 15
Totals 240 33-86 22-31 20-47 17 18 94
Golden State 27 33 21 27 - 108
San Antonio 22 31 24 17 - 94
FG% - G.S. .458, S.A. .384 FT% - G.S. .917, S.A. .710. Three-point goals - G.S. 10-23, .435 (Price 3-5, Sprewell 3-7, Mullin 2-5, Armstrong 1-3, Coles 1-3), S.A. 6-20, .300 (Alexander 2-4, Maxwell 2-7, Feick 1-1, Wilkins 1-6, Del Negro 0-2). Team Rebounds - G.S. 6, S.A. 11. Blocked shots - G.S. 9 (Spencer 5, Mullin, Smith, Owes, Royal), S.A. 10 (Herrera 4, Anderson 3, Johnson, Wilkins, Feick). Turnovers - G.S. 10 (Sprewell 3, Smith, Armstrong, Coles, Price, Owes, team 2), S.A. 12 (Anderson 4, Alexander 4, Williams 2, Herrera, Maxwell). Steals - G.S. 7 (Spencer 2, Sprewell 2, Smith, Armstrong, Coles), S.A. 5 (Anderson 2, Williams, Maxwell, Alexander).
BIG SHOT MANU!!!!HE DID IT!!!!!!
BALL DONT LIE!!!
GSW will never get to forget this taste of their mouth!!!
TAKE THIS GSW!
GO SPURS GO!!
WAY TO START THIS SERIES WITH A HEART AS BIG AS DAT!!!!!:drummer
ERIC SPURS DOMINATION NATION GRIND IT!!!!
STOLE THE GSW HEARTS AND DROPED THEM FLAT ON THEIR BACK!
THE 2 OT WIN WAS PRICELESS! MUST BE FOLLOWED BY 3 MORE KNOCK OUT PUNCH WINS!!! LETS WIN 3 MOTRE SPURS!!ONE AT A TIME!!!
Go Spurs Go! LOVING our SPURS MOOOOOOREEEE & MOOOOOREEE
Hmmm was an Epic win and hope Pop puts Kwahi on Steph right fronm the start and teh Spurs D comes to play and that TD is 100%. Then it could be a sweep!
Let us all remember the true hero of the game: Richard Jefferson for missing two super-clutch free throws that would have won it for GS.
Come a little closer honey, I won't bite ya.
One more lager, and I might just learn to like ya.
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