Spurs Bench Report - 4/5/13

USA TODAY Sports

Since last Friday, the San Antonio Spurs have gone a frustrating 2-3 with an average game margin of 0 points. The Spurs lost Manu Ginobili for what appears to be the remainder of the regular season and are still dealing with injuries throughout the rest of the roster. The bench will be tested more than ever during the final days of the season but let's take a glance on how they performed during the past week.

Reminder - grading is divided into the three categories of offense, defense and hustle. These three elements makes up the overall score. The scores handed out are also relative to the player's role/position on the team, which is why the following scores are broken into three groups.

  • Offense is scored on direct/indirect production, efficiency, clutch shots, and game management.
  • Defense is scored on how the player handles their assignment, team defense, defensive rebounds, and of course their production on steals and blocks.
  • Hustle is based on the player's activity/energy on both ends, play on 50/50 balls, rebounding overall (including boxing out), and causing turnovers.

The 6th Man

The big gun off the bench. When healthy, Ginobili is not likely to depart this category in either direction.

Manu Ginobili

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Manu N/A N/A N/A N/A






Manu only managed 3 minutes of court time last Friday against Los Angeles before injuring his right hamstring yet again. The Spurs 6th man actually got off to a good start, earning 2 points (off free throws) and distributing 2 assists. With only 7 games left in the regular season, the San Antonio Spurs will be without Ginobili until the start of the playoffs - possibly even longer.

The Regular Rotation

The regular rotation features the primary role players in the Spurs offense and roughly 13-20 minutes per game in some type of consistency.

Boris Diaw

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Diaw C- B C+ C+






Diaw's primary role on offense is to set screens, move the ball, and space the floor. Diaw has been very effective in the first two elements but is of little threat from beyond the arc (teams don't even bother to cover him). Boris hit only one of his five attempts from deep last week, which also shows how often he even gets/takes looks from there. Diaw had a terrible shooting night against Memphis, going 3 of 12 overall but was able to step up somewhat on the defensive end against the bigger Grizzlies front court. As always, Diaw did a great job protecting the ball (only 2 turnovers in the last 128 minutes) and registered roughly 3 assists per game this past week.

Diaw struggled on defense for the most part against the Clippers but made a great play when he found himself one-on-one with Chris Paul in the final seconds of the fourth quarter. Paul got to Diaw's right easily but Boris reached out and swiped the ball away, giving San Antonio the final possession of the game (after a Clippers loose ball foul). Diaw had a solid game on both ends against Orlando and was able to give the Spurs a short run late against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Stephen Jackson

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Jax C C- A- C






Jackson finally had two decent games back-to-back this past week. Stephen went 5 of 8 for 11 points against the Miami Heat and 4 of 10 for 12 points the following night against Memphis. Against the Grizzlies, Jackson did a great job timing his drives on the close-out defense and fought for boards against the Memphis big men. Stephen suffered defensively against both the Clippers and Heat but somewhat bounced back nicely against the Grizzlies (2 steals and 2 blocks) and Orlando. However, against Memphis, Stephen did end up on the wrong end of an alley-oop, made some questionable decisions, and got burned by Mike Conley (several times).

As a starter, Stephen Jackson laid an egg on offense against the visiting Orlando Magic. Captain Jack forced the action at the rim, passing on open looks. Stephen had to miss last night's game against the Thunder after Orlando's Nikola Vucevic stepped on Jackson's right foot, giving the veteran swing man another sprained ankle.

DeJuan Blair

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Blair C+ C B- C+






DeJuan missed the last two games due to a stomach virus but the 6'7" power forward has essentially been relegated to victory cigar status. Blair played 20 minutes in the loss to Memphis but only because Tim Duncan had the night off. Memphis is not a squad the Spurs wish to run their mini-front court against.

Despite the personal fouls (4), DeJuan did well against the bigger Grizzlies. Blair scored 6 points on 3 of 3 shooting, including a 17 foot jumper, pulled down 4 rebounds, dished 4 assists inside, and used his quick hands to give the Spurs 2 steals.

Matt Bonner

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Bonner C C B- C+






Matt Bonner played a solid 9-minute game against the Clippers on March 29th. Matt made a driving right-handed hook and later jumped a Matt Barnes pass, launching it to Tony Parker for a successful fast break. Defensively, Lamar Odom made Bonner pay a pair of outside looks. Bonner basically only saw court time against Miami in the final 8 minutes. The plan was to open up the Miami defense but Bonner offered little on either side of the court. Bonner had a bad pass picked off by Shane Battier and was also responsible for a shot clock turnover late in the game. Neither led to Miami points but wasted opportunities are wasted opportunities.

Matt Bonner's minutes took a serious hit during the Rodeo Road Trip but, due to the Popovich rest strategy, the Red Mamba finally received back-to-back nights of 18+ minutes against Memphis and Orlando. Despite a pedestrian stat sheet in both games, Bonner did well. Which is odd considering how bad of a mismatch Memphis is for Bonner. The Red Rocket hit two big three-pointers in the Memphis game but had pair of bad turnovers.

Note: Bonner hasn't pulled down many rebounds but he is boxing out much better than he has in the past.

Gary Neal

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Neal
C- F B- D+






After missing a string of games due to lingering issues in his left leg, Gary Neal finally re-entered the Spurs rotation last week against the Los Angeles Clippers. Gary Neal looked like a man who hadn't played in forever but he was still able to produce through 6 assists and hustle on the court (even though he struggled defensively). Neal's shooting woes carried over to the game against Miami but it appeared that his brain got left behind. Gary clanked wide open looks and made mental mistake after mental mistake. With under 10 minutes left in the game, Neal stole a bad pass and opted for a near 30-foot three-point shot on the fast break. The Spurs were only down by seven points at that time and the ill-decision by Neal killed a golden chance to trim the lead. Neal had finally made his first three-point basket prior to that series and decided a terrible time to do his standard heat check.

The Spurs guard was equally as bad on defense against the Memphis Grizzlies. At the end of the game, Neal sunk about 15 feet off Mike Conley which allowed the easier game-tying three-pointer ever taken in history. Neal did have a solid performance on both ends against the underwhelming back court of Orlando (16 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists) and was one of the few Spurs who could hit a basket in Oklahoma City.

Nando De Colo

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Decolo C B- B- B-






De Colo was easily the best defender on the floor in the Orlando game and, for a rookie guard, did a decent job against the stacked back courts of Los Angeles, Memphis, Miami, and Oklahoma City. I'm giving Nando a bump in his defensive grade even though there was a time in last night's game where the Thunder's offensive philosophy was "let Westbrook go at Nando."

Nando shot well against Memphis, making some tough shots, but he also put his recklessness on display with 5 turnovers. De Colo had to step up after Parker went down against the Thunder and looked much more in control (only 1 turnover). Against the Thunder, Nando also hit two big three-pointers, attacked the glass, and grabbed a pair of steals. BUT Nando did a poor job keeping Russell Westbrook, one of the best rebounding guards, off the offensive glass.

The Victory Cigars

These are the guys we demand to see more off because they rarely get to play and whose talent generally gets subjected to meme treatment and/or overblown to mythical proportions.

Cory Joseph

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Joseph A- B A- B+






Cory Joseph is back in the Victory Cigars Club thanks to the return of Tony Parker. Barring injury, it's pretty obvious that Popovich has no post-season plans for Joseph. Joseph may see more action on the floor with the latest Parker injury but it will be primarily from the bench. Coach Pop is rolling with Nando as the primary back-up to the other Frenchie.

Cory only played 12-plus minutes against the Orlando Magic, mostly in the fourth quarter, but he made the most of it. Joseph did a great job of moving without the ball and creating defensive collapses with his attacks into the lane. The guard finished with 8 points on a perfect 4 for 4 night and also tallied 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal.


Patty Mills

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Mills D C+ A B-






Patty Mills finally saw the court again on Wednesday against the visiting Orlando Magic. Mills jacked up 11 shots in 25 minutes, which is to be expected, but only connected on 3 of them. Patty went 1 of 6 from behind the arc as well but was able to contribute with a handful of assists. Mills did well defensively but, then again, Beno Udrih doesn't exactly strike fear in the heart of any person (outside of his team's fanbase). Mills' hustle and energy was a major boost to his team and helped the Spurs pull away from the Magic.

Aron Baynes

Offense

Defense

Hustle

Overall

Baynes B+ B B+ B+






Baynes received solid minutes (18) against the Orlando Magic, his first NBA action since March 12th. The Aussie big man pulled down five boards and put up 9 points on 4-6 field goals. Baynes showed off his physicality on the glass, on defense, and screens. Along with nice dunk of a pick and roll with Gary Neal, Aron also showed off his mid-range game with a turn-around jumper (as he did in scrap minutes earlier this season). The only reason Baynes will see any more minutes this season is because of rest games in the regular season's final days but the big guy has definitely stoked the off-season interest that will surely follow him.

Follow Aaron on Twitter at @DukeOfBexar for more Spurs news, notes, quotes, and opinions.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Pounding The Rock

You must be a member of Pounding The Rock to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pounding The Rock. You should read them.

Join Pounding The Rock

You must be a member of Pounding The Rock to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pounding The Rock. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker