“Playoff” Spurs start the game
The Spurs came out with a sense of urgency and a line-up adjustment. Rudy Gay joined LaMarcus Aldridge, Danny Green, Patty Mills, and Dejounte Murray. The alteration immediately took some pressure off LMA, which allowed the big man to go at the Warriors bigs and put David West and JaVale McGee in foul trouble during the first half.
In addition, there was a sliver of time during the second quarter when Pop had Aldridge and Gay on the floor alongside Pau Gasol. The big line-up allowed Gasol to feed both Aldridge and Gay in the low post while simultaneously spreading the floor.
“Road” Spurs start the second half
After heading to the locker room with a lead, the Spurs kicked off the 3rd quarter with back-to-back turnovers, squandering the lead and allowing the dominant version of the Warriors to alley-oop and drain threes with ease.
But luckily for the Spurs, LaMarcus Aldridge was having none of it and turned up the heat hitting 9 straight points bringing the lead back to the good guys and forcing Kerr to take a timeout.
That time out serves Golden State well as they regained the lead and end the 3rd up by 5.
A fourth quarter with no Durant became the Klay Thompson show as the Dubs leapt out to an eleven point lead in the first couple of minutes.
Fight as they would, the Spurs simply couldn’t close the gap and in the end saw the Warriors slip even further away until Pop subbed in the bench with less than three minutes left in garbage time.
- As mentioned, Rudy Gay starting helped take pressure off LaMarcus and added athleticism to the defense that was needed against the likes of Durant, Thompson, Andre Iguodala, and Draymond Green.
- There seemed to be a lot less of the young guys — Dejounte Murray and Bryn Forbes — in exchange for the experience of Gasol and Ginobili.
- There has been very little in the way of slowing Klay Thompson. This will have to be a focus if the Spurs plan on taking a game away back in San Antonio.