It seems like only yesterday the San Antonio Spurs were painful to watch. Not right now as they remain red-hot at home. In game 4 of their six-game home-stand, they exacted Revenge 4.0 on the Los Angeles Clippers in one of their more satisfying performances of the season: a 125-87 second-half blowout. Solid defense, good ball movement, and team-wide contributions led to a comfortable win for the Spurs as they return to having a winning record for the first time since November 18.
LaMarcus Aldridge had one of his best games of the season with 27 points on 12-14 shooting, including his first three of the season. Rudy Gay followed up with 21 points, and four other Spurs scored in double figures while the team as a whole shot just under 58%.
- An early shot by Avery Bradley bounced over the backboard and got caught up in the crossbar that connects the basket to the stanchion. Some fans could be heard chanting for Boban Marjanovic to take action. Ultimately Rudy Gay got it down with a mop handle, but imagine how the crowd would have exploded if Boban had assisted? That would have been awesome.
- On two consecutive plays in the first quarter, noted thorn-in-everyone’s-side Patrick Beverley made contact with Marco Belinelli as he attempted threes. He made the first one with no call, but the second time it was called. Beverley and Doc Rivers tried to argue that Beli kicked his leg out to create the contact, but there was just one problem with that argument: he ran into Beli from behind after going around a screen and not stopping in time. The Spurs would go on to lead 38-27 at the end of the quarter.
- The refs had an awkward second quarter. First, Tobias Harris drew a weak call on Dante Cunningham by leaning into his vertically-stretch arm to create contact. It appeared to be an and-one as he made the basket, but he took two free throws. First it was explained that the first free throw didn’t count for some reason, then it turned out the shot didn’t count so both free throws were legit. Regardless, the scoreboard wasn’t right again until halftime.
- Soon after that incident, DeMar DeRozan got heated with the refs. First, he was called for a phantom offensive foul after Bradley poked the ball away him and out of bounds. He started charging towards the basket on the following possessions but couldn’t buy a call despite plenty of contact. He finally blew up, earned his technical, then lit a fire under his team to help a lead that had dwindled down to 4 get back up to nine, 66-57, at the half.
- After all that was over, the refs probably just wanted to get off the court and to the locker room for halftime. However, Danilo Gallinari had some complaints of his own, and whether it was what he had to say or the fact that he was delaying their halftime break, he got a T of his own that the Spurs took at the beginning of the third quarter.
- The Spurs started the third quarter on a 10-0 run (15-0 if you count the end of the second) and never looked back. Some amazing (and at times too unselfish) ball movement kept the Clippers defense on their heels, and the Spurs ended the third with a 98-77 lead, which meant . . .
- WE GOT BOBAN!!! Everyone’s favorite Serbian giant finally entered the game with the Spurs up 28 with less than 9 minutes to go. Predictably, he got loud cheers and a standing ovation from the Spurs crowd. After all that, it ended up being uninteresting as he finished the night with just 2 points, 2 rebounds and a steal, but it’s one of the only times you’ll see Spurs fans cheering for the opponent.
- Bryn Forbes scored his 1,000th career point on a three in the third quarter. It’s quite the accomplishment for the un-drafted, undersized shooting guard. He had a lot of detractors coming into the season, but despite being thrust into an unnatural role of starting point guard, he is thriving and having a breakout season. Good on you, Sparty!
- This wild sequence got the call of the game from Bill Land: “Somebody’s gotta shoot it — Daddy does!” (A reference to new father Davis Bertans)
For the Clippers fans’ perspective, visit Clips Nation.
The Spurs return to the AT&T Center on Saturday to take on the Chicago Bulls. Tip-off will be at 7:30 PM CT on KENS 5.