What went wrong for the Spurs in Game 4?


In the words of Gregg Popovich, "Turnovers." It may have been a bit of foreshadowing with the Spurs having the quickest turnover in Finals history two seconds into the game. The Spurs not only lost 19 possessions but also allowed the Heat to do what they do best, score in transition. The Heat also had 7 blocked shots, most of which coming off of Tiago Splitter. The Spurs were not giving many up fakes to make the Heat second guess themselves. This allowed the high flyers such as LeBron, Bosh, and the best blocking guard of all time (Dwayne Wade) to time the shots perfectly.

Terrible Matchups

Throughout the game, Pop was constantly trying to make the whole "big on small" thing work. Splitter started the game on Wade and was quickly substituted within the first minute of the game after a shooting foul on Wade. I understand he was trying to do, but it simply did not work. Knowing that Wade and LeBron were struggling to make jump shots, Pop was willing to give up the 19 foot jumper instead of the drive. It would have worked, but...

The Heat were making their shots

When you are facing a jump shooting team like the Heat, you know they are going to have their days. Game 4 was one of those days shooting 53%. The downside to being a jump shooting team is that they are going to be very inconsistent, as we have seen in the past two series with the Heat alternating wins and losses.

Struggles of Tiago and Manu

Manu simply has not been Manu this post season. He seems to have lost a step or two and cannot split the screen or get to the rim as quickly as he used to. It is easy to see that the Spurs are at their best when Tony is on the floor, but when he is not, someone else needs to be to handle the ball, get to the whole, and find the open man or score. Manu is really the only person who can aside from possibly Cory Joseph. When Many struggles, the entire second unit struggles. Then there is Tiago Splitter who has gotten blocked or stolen from almost everyone on the team. At the beginning of the series, it seemed as if the bigger Spurs lineup would be an asset rather than a liability. He looks to have no confidence in his game right now and I would expect to see more Boris Diaw in the next game.

Overall, I don't think the Spurs played that bad of a game other than the 19 turnovers. Danny Green and Gary Neal still seem to have the hot hand and Tony is still playing big even with a tweaked hammy. Duncan is still putting up his points and Pop is still the best coach in the league. In Game 5 I expect to see bigger minutes for Diaw and Neal. The Heat continue to play small and make it a game of guards. Instead of trying to play it bigger, Pop needs to just get into a guard matchup. If there is one thing that the Spurs have, it's guards.

This is fan-created content on The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff at Pounding the Rock.

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