These are my recollections of yesterday’s open practice for the Spurs. Not being a season ticket holder, I stood outside with the masses. And It was ‘the masses’. I figure 6000-8000. It was open seating and I was able to get down to the sixth row, across the court from BlaseE. Below are views of an untrained fan.
Tony Parker looked very, very GOOD! To me, he looked in mid-season form. George Hill had Tony on defense, and did an OK job, but Tony still got away on drives. He got people involved, took his own shots, and made me feel very good about this season. I believe he was 6 for 6 at the line.
Manu looked like the Manu of old. In that, I mean slashing, passing and driving to the goal. His passes looked very good, his motion was very fluid and apparently effort free. Manu looks like he dropped some weight, or maybe he is just more toned.
Michael Finley has dropped some weight and really looked like a Stud. I mean that in a positive way. He looked like he was there to take of care of business. . He was having a good time, but ready to go to war!
Matt Bonner looked good. He hit a few 3’s and worked his way to the line where he hit most if not all his free throws. I noticed him more on offense than defense. Although I did notice he and Blair were matched up.
Tim Duncan didn’t really stand out. Which is what I would expect for this type of venue. He has also dropped some weight and looked pretty good. He did have one shot blocked, (it was a nice block) and I didn’t see the foul either, BlaseE. He is the same Tim at the line, about 50 percent. His movements were easy. And I did notice him talking to some of the new guys between plays. I assume about positioning and movement. Made me feel very good to see this constructive criticism, this feedback, as opposed to hollering at the mistakes. I have never seen or heard Tim be anything but at gentlemen on the court. It just made me feel good to see him take time to talk to Blair or one of the other new guys.
Roger Mason Jr. looks like he lost a bunch of weight, down to his fighting weight. He looked good, he looked smooth. He dropped a couple of threes.
George Hill looked very good. He ran the Silver team while Tony ran the Black. He looked confident and smooth. He did as good a job on Tony as anyone could have. He did force the situation when the play broke down occasionally. But he doesn’t have Tony’s speed to salvage a situation that has broken down. I feel he will do a good job when in the game.
Richard Jefferson looked comfortable. His first shots wouldn’t fall, but then, everyone was cold. After 5 minutes of play, the score was 4 to 3. No one was hitting! He did have some good passes and he ran the floor well. He took the microphone after the practice to MC the 3 point shot contest and was very comfortable in that role for the team.
DeJuan Blair looked good. I must confess, he was one of the primary reasons I attended this. He was not a beast, considering the cast of players, but he did hold his own. I haven’t seen any stats, but I think he may have out rebounded everyone. He called for the ball a couple of times and was able to score. But one time he was really forcing the situation and should have passed out. He took an offensive rebound away from one of the big men after a free throw and then scored. Then the same big man (don’t know which one) scored over Blair when Blair attempted to block the shot. I guess turnabout is fair play. Blair and Manu combined on a very nice play. Manu threw a pass about half the length of the court in traffic to a breaking Blair, also in traffic. Blair continued the drive and scored. I think he is good enough to be on the team, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him in Austin for part of the season so he can play every game. He had some family/friends at the game; I stopped by after the practice and welcomed them to San Antonio.
Curtis Jerrells was the only player that seemed to struggle. He seems much shorter than everyone else and a little lost. He had some good plays, but just didn’t seem to be the same level as the others.
Keith Bogans looked comfortable and smooth. He fit in well.
The others didn’t stand out in my mind, sorry. I will need to prepare myself better if I try to report like this again. It was a very enjoyable time. The fans and the Players seemed to have a good time.