Starting in place of a resting LaMarcus Aldridge, David Lee posted a double-double of 18 points and 10 rebounds in 30:54 minutes of play, tying his season-high in scoring. He also contributed 2 blocks as he helped lead the Spurs to a huge 28-point comeback victory.
After the game, David had this to say: “It was a really bad start for us, but once we started getting back on defense and making them score in the half court, we turned up the pressure a little. We are always going to fight as a team. We knew if got a few stops in a row and hustled on every play, we could get to within striking distance. Being down 28 seemed like a lot of points, but we were able to chop away and make it work.”
Lets take a look at some of his plays which show how he made it work.
#1 Here we see Lee catch a lob pass from Tony Parker and begin his move. After surveying the defense, he starts left, spins right, and finishes with a right handed finger roll for the score. This play looks ordinary except when you consider...he is naturally left handed.
#2 In this break away play, Patty Mills drives hard and pulls up and passes to Lee, who passes it back to Patty. As Patty dribbles right, he passes to Kyle Anderson, who immediately passes the ball to Lee, who goes up and slams home a two handed dunk.
#3 Now we are in the 4th quarter with a chance to tie the game. Jonathon Simmons starts the play going in for the basket and passes to the roll man, Anderson, who takes a shot in traffic. Lee catches the rebound and goes back up with an off-balance bank shot for the and-one.
#4 Up by four with a little over three minutes left in the game we see Mills and Lee execute almost a perfect pick-and-roll. Of course, David finishes with a dunk. A closer look reveals that David sets his pick high with his legs far apart, which gives Patty the advantage over the defender as he goes around David. Lee then releases for the basket in a sprint the second Patty goes past his hip, and Patty hits him with the pass after David takes only one step, and it is to late for the defender to react. One last man to watch is Danny Green who drops in towards the basket and curls around causing more counter and misdirection in the play. Pure textbook, and the crowd enjoyed it too.
Manu Ginobili, Patty Mills and Danny Green also had big games along with Lee. What do they all have in common? They are all veterans, and as Coach Popovich said: “They took some pride in it. They wanted to win the game.”