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GIF Breakdown: Spurs vs. Dallas Mavericks

The return of the regular season brings the return of GIF Breakdown, where we'll take a second look at some of the plays that stood out from the Spurs' victory over the Mavericks on Tuesday.

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Let's start just after after a Tony Parker miss where Tim Duncan and Tyson Chandler knocked the ball loose as they fought for the rebound. Timmy hustles to the corner, tosses the ball to Boris Diaw near halfcourt as he's falling out of bounds and gives the Spurs a second chance. The Spurs swing the ball around the arc while Monta Ellis appears to be mesmerized by the movement as Tyson Chandler and Jameer Nelson try to get Ellis to take Parker in the corner. It's far too late once Ellis trots in Tony's direction -- Manu's pass is pure and Tony cans the less-than-common right corner three.

One more note: By my estimate, the Spurs moved the ball 93 feet from Tim to Tony at a leisurely 16 mph. Monta was very good offensively, he had his midrange jumper working and led all scorers, but this is pretty awful awareness on his part.

tony corner

After a remarkably poor preseason performance, Manu Ginobili needed just three minutes of time on the court before he faked a three and made a one-dribble Euro Step drive into the lane that he ended with a little lefty layup off the glass. That's pretty much vintage Ginobili if you ask me.

manu first bucket

Tony Parker looks like he's in great shape after taking the summer off for the first time in three years to 'give back to the Spurs.' I expect this to be a great season for Parker and he was very good in the opener. As we see from this overhead camera, he's still deadly in space and can finish with the best.

tony penetration

The Spurs have a three-guard lineup on the floor with both of the Spurs point guards spotting up in the corners while Ginobili works a couple of screens to try to shake Chandler Parsons. Parsons goes over Duncan as Manu receives the ball, but Gino is able to turn the corner and draw the defense in as he makes his journey behind the backboard. Somehow the airborne Manu is able to wrap a pass around Tyson Chandler and over Dirk out to Boris. Boris threatens Devin Harris enough to cause him to leave Cory Joseph open in the corner.

CoJo knocked down the short three, which isn't something that he's done much of previously, and hopefully the summer of working with the Spurs' virtuoso shooting coach, Chip Engelland, will pay dividends and fill in some of the shooting that the Spurs will miss while Patty Mills mends his shoulder.

cojo corner

Chandler Parsons does a nice job of denying Tony the ball in the corner which forces Matt Bonner to pass it out to Danny at the top of the arc. Green uses a Bonner screen to get into the paint while Marco Belinelli works his way around the arc to give Danny a passing angle as he drives. Monta Ellis' job is to stick with Beli, who just happens to have been the league's fifth deadliest three-point shooter last season, but he's caught in no-mans land and the Spurs add three more points.

danny to marco

The Wee Frenchman gets Jameer Nelson off balance with a fake spin move, then shows great footwork to keep his pivot while going into a modified up-and-under that left the whole crowd buzzing. [Editor's note: In a night with much to celebrate, and after all the cheering during the ring ceremony and banner unveiling, this was the weirdest sound the crowd made all night. In real time, watching from the arena, it sure looked like Tony was operating outside the laws of physics for a second and a half. Pretty cool new move for Parker. - J.R. Wilco]

tony move

You may have heard that Manu shot 8.7% from deep during the preseason (2-for-23,) and he missed his first three attempts on opening night, but when the pressure was really on, he somehow hit this ridiculous fadeaway, shot clock-beating 25-footer.

manu b

Ladies and gentleman,I present the ultra-deferring, hot potato-playing, facilitating and fist pumping Boris Diaw.


Here's Dirk being all Dirk about it and knocking down a crunch time fadeaway to give his team a two-point lead after they had trailed the good guys by nine earlier in the quarter. That shot is so good. But then...

dirky dirk

On the very next possession a Dallas switch left Devin Harris against Boris in the post and Nowitzki on Parker. Tony decided to let Bobo go to work in the post which forced Dirk to leave Tony to help on Diaw.  Cue the pretty kick-out from Diaw and Parker's fourth three in four tries. That's cold blooded.

Watch FirstName LastName on the Mavs bench. He knows it's going in.

tony gw

This team is so easy to root for.