The Spurs, behind an outstanding set of performances by LaMarcus Aldridge (30 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists) and Davis Bertans (21 points on 5-8 from 3-pt), along with 57% shooting from the field (16-34 from 3-pt) fended off the undermanned, yet pesky Washington Wizards. The Wizards worked some road magic against Orlando Friday night, while the Spurs played a rare SEGABAGA that began less than 24 hours after their win against New Orleans Saturday night. So it is here where I humbly offer a potential addition to the PtR lexicon - the SEGALEDA (SEcond GAme in LEss than a DAy).
- The Wizards entered the contest with an 18 game losing streak in San Antonio - dating back to the post-championship ‘99-’00 season. The Spurs’ average margin of victory during this home streak has been nearly 15 points. Wachington’s last victory in the Alamo City was a 10 point win and Mitch Richmond was their lead scorer. I attended that game in person (visiting from California) - my first Spurs home game in over 14 years - and this essentially is my penance for that loss.
- Following a Thomas Bryant dunk, Pop called a timeout :16 into the action. As confirmed by ESPN Stats, this is the quickest opening timeout taken this season. Pop, not to be outdone . . . by himself, called back to back timeouts midway through the second sandwiched around a poor defensive possession.
- The Spurs, in the first handful of possessions, tried to establish high-low action with LaMarcus Aldridge and Pau Gasol. However, Washington attacked back on the other end with a very active Bryant, which netted Gasol two fouls in the first four minutes.
- Derrick White, as has been mentioned often here, seems to have a very solid sense of offensive pacing. In the only time he seemed to be out of position in the first quarter, he still fired off a diagonal pass to Bryn Forbes for an open three attempt.
- The Spurs bench started well with an 18-4 margin against their counterparts, and led by Patty Mills and Marco Belinelli’s spirited passing and shotmaking, allowed the Spurs to race out to a 10 point lead after one period. The Wizards’ leading scorer, Bradley Beal, was held scoreless.
- It is hard to tell whether the Washington team truly misses having John Wall around given that they have moved up in the standings in his absence. However, the ball seemingly ‘did not stick’ when Tomas Satoransky or Chasson Randle, led the team, and the Wizards started the second with ten straight successful offensive possessions.
- In a very entertaining end to the second quarter where the Wizards scored their most points in a quarter all season (43) and San Antonio countered every surge, the Spurs eked ahead by one behind Aldridge’s 21 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists. The Wizards’ announcers spent most of the first half marveling at Aldridge’s effort - capped by “He’s just a beast in there!”
- I imagine some of us play the That guy would make a great Spur game as you watch. I have often wondered what this decade’s Spurs teams would have looked like with an in-his-prime Trevor Ariza as a lockdown defender and corner 3 specialist. On the other hand, Jeff Green, someone I’ve never viewed longingly, was surprisingly cited by the Wizards’ announcers as someone that has stabilized the team.
- It has come to the point in Davis Bertans’ development where we now fully expect his three-pointers to always go in; however, his leaner in the lane and subsequent right-hand layup off the glass in the fourth quarter were proof that his off-the-dribble game continues to improve.
- Golden State’s current 10+ game winning streak makes it six straight seasons now where a team has won double digit games in a row. What is the last team that has accomplished that feat? Our San Antonio Spurs from 2010-2016.
The Spurs continue their four-game homestand Tuesday night at 7:30 CDT against a Phoenix Suns team trying to rise from the ashes of failure. Happy 70th birthday tomorrow, Pop!