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Final Score: Rodeo Road Trip off to shaky start, Raptors win 87-82

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The Spurs weren't able to get Gregg Popovich his 1000th career regular-season win in the first game of the Rodeo Road Trip.

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

That was a really frustrating game to watch.  It was another slow start from the Silver and Black while Toronto started 8-of-11 from the floor and during the same stretch the Spurs went 4-of-16. The shooting didn't really get much better as the game went on. That's too bad because if a few of the 24 open looks the Spurs missed had gone in maybe a couple of mistakes down the stretch wouldn't have hurt so badly. It was a small miracle that the Spurs were even in the game after shooting 33%, so there's that.

The Spurs trailed by seven early in the fourth but the game was tight for the rest of the contest. The Spurs took a three-point lead with 1:49 left on a Tony Parker two, but they failed to score the rest of the way while James Johnson played the unlikely hero with a late triple and a split-pair of free throws that proved to be enough. The Spurs did have a chance with four seconds left, but Tim Duncan made one of the worst inbounds passes of his career and threw the ball out of bounds on the other sideline.

You figure your best bet is to let Tim make the inbound pass, but for the second time this season he's turned the ball over on an inbounds pass in crunch time (bad pass against Detroit a month ago) and the Spurs came up short. A couple of months ago I watched all of Tim's 2013-14 turnovers because I was curious how reliable he was on the inbound. I can't remember for sure, but it was either zero or one turnover off the inbound for all situations last season.

Jesus Gomez will have the recap out soon.

Your Spurs fall to 32-19 for the season and remain married to the seventh seed. While I don't expect that to hold, it would have been nice to see SA win a close game with most of the West having problems of their own. After winning all but one game with a final margin of five or less last season, the Spurs now have nine such losses this season (and that doesn't include the 10-point 3OT loss to Damian Lillard.)

Quick Notes:

  • The Spurs finished with 20 offensive rebounds. That's a big number and is quite rare for the Spurs. The last time they matched that was on 12-29-2011 when they lost to the Rockets. SA finished both games with 93 field goal attempt and shot under 38%. That would explain the boards.
  • Cory Joseph managed to post a +19 in his 11 minutes of playing time. That makes his exclusion from the second half a real head scratcher. I was playing catch-up on the DVR - was there an injury I didn't hear about?

Next Up:

The Spurs travel to Indiana to take on the Pacers on Monday night at 6 p.m. Spurs time. It will be interesting to see what Extraneous G is going to do with his lineup. Tim Duncan played 32 minutes, Manu Ginobili played 27, Tony Parker played 30 and Kawhi Leonard led the team with 37. With the all-star break coming this weekend I would guess that everyone but Manu, that hammy has been a problem for years, will probably get some run. Hopefully the good guys can finish the week out with a couple of wins.