Well, the dreaded losing streak is upon us. Granted, it's the first of the year and all that, but it doesn't really feel any better to put it like that. The Spurs got run out of New York and then couldn't complete the comeback in Boston. There's nothing more frustrating than to see your team have a chance to win and not execute. Fortunately, the Spurs head over to Indiana. Indiana is supposed to be the home of basketball and despite their being 2nd in the Central Division, the Pacers aren't giving the basketball loving state too much to enjoy. Let's hope for all of Spursdom that this Texas team can show 'em how it's done.
Preview, music and more to follow.
UPDATE: Parker may miss game with illness. Hat tip to Tim C.
Beck describes how we Spurs fans feel after the losing streak:
Beck was uncool before it was cool to be uncool. Now on the the positive song.
San Antonio Spurs @ Indiana Pacers
Where: Conseco Fieldhouse
When: Jan. 7, 2011, 6:00 p.m. Spurs Time - Timezone Converter
Watch: Fox Sports Southwest
By the Numbers
PG: Tony Parker needs to dominate Fisher. That is all.
SG: Manu will need to bounce back from his rough finish in Boston. He will, I have no doubt. Brandon Rush is scoring 12 ppg and is a big SG. The Sickness should be able to use his quickness to great effect.
SF: Danny Granger hasn't been having his best year. He's averaging 21 ppg, but his PER is 16.6. Not great. I still give him the Spur over RJ 2.0. I'd love for Rage to prove me wrong, but I see Granger using his good length and range to give Jefferson trouble.
PF: Blair will matched up with McRoberts. I haven't heard anything about McRoberts, but the guy plays almost 22 minutes per game and yet only grabs 5.5 rebounds per game. Blair should be able to have his way on the glass. UPDATE: Hansbrough is apparently starting tonight at the PF spot. He'll make Blair work if nothing else.
C: Roy Hibbert has made himself into a decent big man. He anchors a fairly solid Pacers D. His size could cause Duncan some problems, but I expect Duncan to use his quickness and BBIQ to his advantage. Also, Hibbert, who's 7 feet 2 inches tall, is playing about 29 mpg and yet only pulling down a team high 8 rpg. Not good.
The Pacers have a rookie that a lot of Spurs fans wanted on our bench Paul George. George is playing about 15 mpg, but doesn't really appear to be doing a lot, stats wise. The Pacers play a lot of guys. All but one of their players average 10+ mpg. That said, only 5 of their guys average double digit points. I think that Neal, Bonner, Splitter, Hill and Co. should dominate this match up.
Jim O'Brien sounds like a guy you want to hang out with on St. Patty's day, but I'm not sure I'd want him leading my team. That said, I really don't know much about O'Brien, but considering his teams success, I'm taking Pop here.
The Pacers are a decent defensive team, at least that's the way the stats read, but the Spurs are coming off two tough losses and will be looking to flex their offensive powers.
Manu dominated the 4th quarter against a really good Celtics team. I see him overcoming that last play and continuing the stellar play. The bench guys are due for some stellar play.
Spurs end the losing streak with a nice double digit win.
Key(s) to the Game
Key 1 - Rebounding. The Pacers are not a good rebounding team. The Spurs need to make sure it stays that way in this game. Blair, Duncan and Co. need to dominate the glass.
Key 2 - Ball Movement - The Spurs offense can put a ton of pressure on this Pacers team which struggles to score. Good ball movement will open up the fairly solid Indiana defense and hopefully give the good guys the lead they'll use to make it comfortable.
Indy Cornrows (SB Nation)
WOAI 1200AM; Audio League Pass[streaming]
As always, NBA league pass is recommended for those who are willing to pony up the cash. Almost every Spurs game will be broadcast there, which is especially helpful for those of us who aren't in the San Antonio area.
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