Game Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. Cleveland Cavaliers

San Antonio Spurs vs Cleveland Cavaliers

AT&T Center
April 22, 6:00 PM Spurs Time
TV: Fox Sports Southwest- RADIO: 1200 WOAI, 1350 KCOR

Spurs started off the weekend in San Antonio with a bang. Not only did they defeat the Los Angeles Lakers for their second straight game in less than a week, they did it in grand fashion, blowing them out once again. While the Spurs are riding high into the post season, the Cavaliers are looking forward to the draft lottery, hoping to win the Anthony Davis sweepstakes.

The Cleveland Cavaliers (21-41) arrive in San Antonio fresh off a victory against the New York Knicks 98-90 at the Quicken Loans Arena. They were led by the Kyrie Irving, the future 2011-2012 NBA Rookie of the Year, with 21 points. He's the real deal, and if they can get Anthony Davis, Cleveland will be winning again.

The Spurs, come into this game with a nice week of work, beating the Lakers twice, convincingly after suffering perhaps their worst loss of the season to the Lakers in San Antonio over a week ago. Any doubts about the lack of size seemingly disappeared after these two victories, and the victory against the red hot Memphis Grizzlies.

This game has the potential to be a trap game, especially coming off two big victories against the Los Angeles Lakers in the past week. Pop will be ready to empty the bench quickly. Last time these two teams met on April 3, Patrick Mills had a breakout game, leading the team to victory with 20 points in 19:49. That's efficient!

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via www.nbamate.com

Look for the deep bench to receive many minutes again, if the team puts Cleveland away early. This will be the start of four games in five nights with Portland in town tomorrow night. Pop will likely try to win these first two games while giving up the last two against the Phoenix Suns (competing to play the Spurs in the first round) and Golden State Warriors (in full tank mode). This would allow Pop to give his team nearly a week off before the postseason begins next weekend.

The Spurs are again, nearing the best record in the league. However, they are not the same team as last year. The Spurs have improved on the wings, getting bigger, longer and more athletic. Their frontline has also improved with the addition of Borris Diaw and a now healthy Tiago Splitter. And props to Matt Bonner who looks like he has put in the time to do what the Spurs need of him. Duncan and Manu look spry and then there is the Big 3, let by Tony Parker. That's all that needs to be said.

It's been a great journey and I hope it goes deep into the summer. We as fans should appreciate what we see here. It won't last much longer, but it is a wonderful thing to see and be a part of regardless of if they win it all or not.

Lineups

Starters
PG: Tony Parker
SG: Danny Green
SF: Kawhi Leonard
PF: Tim Duncan
C: Dejuan Blair

Key Bench Players
Gary Neal
Tiago Splitter
Manu Ginobili

Lineups

Starters
PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: Manny Harris
SF: Anthony Parker
PF: Tristan Thompson
C: Antawn Jamison

Key Bench Players
Omri Casspi
Samardo Samuels
Donald Sloan

NBA Stats Cube Lineup Comparison Here. Cleveland Cavaliers perspective can be found here: Fear the Sword

Game Prediction:

Spurs by 18. Lots of play time for Patty Mills. He scores 21.

Keys to winning:

  • Respect the opponent: Take care of business. Do not expect the Cavs to lay down and just give you the victory.
  • Hustle: Get back on defense and defend the 3pt arc.

As always Tony must dominate Fisher, and 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. Please don't post links to illegal game feeds in the game thread. Links to illegal feeds are not permitted on SBNation, but you can probably find them out there on the internets if you're resourceful and desperate.

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