Game Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. Golden State Warriors, Game 3

Ronald Martinez

The Spurs look to rebound from a costly loss and capture a crucial Game 3 against the Warriors on the road in Oakland.

San Antonio Spurs vs Golden State Warriors

AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
May 10, 2013, 9:30 PM Spurs Time
TV: ESPN - RADIO: 1200 AM WOAI

Tonight the San Antonio Spurs will take on the Golden State Warriors in Game 3 of their matchup in the Western Conference Semi-Finals. Game 2 was a tough loss to swallow for San Antonio, as Golden State proved that they could compete for an entire game by winning 100-91. Klay Thompson was the standout performer for the Warriors, leading his team with 34 points and 14 rebounds. Thompson was simply on fire in Game 2, going 8-9 from three point range, torching whatever defensive strategy the Spurs threw at him. The Spurs, on the other hand, had an awful night shooting the ball, going 39% from the field, similar to how they shot for the first three and a half quarters of Game 1.

The Spurs offense has largely been the reason they won games this year, and now it needs to be fixed to compete with the high-octane attack of the Warriors. In addition to their poor percentage from the field, the Spurs only shot 5-21 from long range, a pitiful 23.8%. The reason for this isn't necessarily that the Spurs are in an offensive funk, but the Warriors have played otstanding defense in the first two games. Klay Thompson has taken on the un-enviable task of stopping Tony Parker and played him about as well as possible. His length has made it hard for Parker to get by him, and without that penetration the Spurs ability to drive and kick to shooters has suffered, leading to more isolations and bad shots. The most consistent option the Spurs have on offense is to post up Tim Duncan, but with Andrew Bogut guarding him, that's not really a foolproof option either. Perhaps going smaller, giving primary ball-handling duties to Manu Ginobili and running Parker off-ball, or featuring Kawhi Leonard a bit more can spark up the offense. Whatever they do, getting back to spreading the floor and running some pick and roll for high percentage shots is crucial to beat the Warriors.

For the Warriors. their shooting prowess continues to light up the scoreboard. In Game 1, it was Steph Curry that caught lightning in a bottle. In Game 2, the catalyst was Klay Thompson. And while trying to figure out a way to stop those two (or at least slow them down) is important, it's the rest of that Warriors team that has upped it's game in the playoffs. Harrison Barnes is playing with a ton of confidence, and shooting well. Draymond Green may or may not have made a pact with the devil to give him a shooting stroke. (Green shot 20.9% from three in the regular season, and in the postseason is shooting 50% from deep, so you be the judge.) To see this team put on this type of shooting performance for so long is astounding, as the law of averages says this hot streak should have ended games ago. It'll be interesting to see if it continues at their home, or if it finally fizzles.

Lineups

Starters
PG: Tony Parker
SG: Danny Green
SF: Kawhi Leonard
PF: Tim Duncan
C: Tiago Splitter

Key Bench Players
Manu Ginobili
Boris Diaw
Matt Bonner

Head Coach
Gregg Popovich

Lineups

Starters
PG: Stephen Curry
SG: Klay Thompson
SF: Harrison Barnes
PF: Festus Ezeli
C: Andrew Bogut

Key Bench Players
Jarrett Jack
Carl Landry
Draymond Green


Head Coach

Mark Jackson

Warriors perspective can be found here: Golden State Of Mind

Game prediction: I hate to say it, but I think the Warriors win this one by 5. I think the "Roaracle" crowd will be a huge factor, and pump this young Warriors team up even further.

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.

Get your San Antonio Spurs tickets here!

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