The Spurs came in fresh from the All-Star break facing the Mavericks in Dallas. It would be their second meeting this season, but the first time facing off against Dallas’s new Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving duo. Spurs’ Rising Star Jeremy Sochan was out for this game due to a left quad injury. Also, Tre Jones (left foot soreness), Devin Vassell (left knee), Isaiah Roby (right ankle sprain), Romeo Langford (left adductor soreness), and Khem Birch (right knee) were all out for this game. The Spurs put up a fight in this one despite trailing for most of the first three quarters. They outrebounded the Mavs 45 (10 offensive)-36 (3 offensive) and outscored them in the paint 66-48. However, after only being by down by 9 at the end of the third, the Mavs exploded in the fourth. They outscored the Spurs 43-26 and ended up winning this game 142-116.
Malaki Branham led the way for the Spurs dropping 23 points, five assists, and two rebounds. He’s filled in nicely at the starting two-guard spot by showing his natural scoring ability off the dribble and from range.
The Twitter caption says it all: his jumper is smooth as silk.
I forgot to mention: Malaki can also put it on the floor and finish with ease. Here he speeds past Irving on the 3 on 2 fastbreak.
This here is something a natural scorer does: getting to his spot while moving without the basketball and the form is veteran-like.
AND-ONE! At this point, you can see Malaki has been doing it all in the first half.
Here, patient dribbling and driving allow Malaki to finish over two defenders.
Keldon Johnson had a nice all-around game with 22 points, eight rebounds, seven assists, and a steal. Even with a week off, you can count on KJ to get you buckets by any means.
Classic Spurs ball movement ends up in a wide-open KJ corner trey.
That finisher badge seems to be activated anytime KJ is close to the rim. After getting by Doncic, he meets Dwight Powell at the rim for a tough finish.
After getting by Doncic again, this time KJ tries a scoop layup on Christian Wood and draws the foul for the and-one!
Devonte’ Graham with the nice find for Zach Collins who finishes over Reggie Bullock for two. Collins finished with a double-double (13 points, 12 rebounds) along with three assists, and a steal in this one.
Here KJ fakes the deep three and finds a wide-open Charles Bassey for the slam! Bassey finished with 16 points, seven rebounds, two assists, and a steal in only 19 minutes played.
Devonte’ for three! He finished with 10 points, five assists, a rebound, and a block. You’ve got to love what he brings to this team on offense, especially when he gets to back up Tre Jones.
HOOK SHOT ALERT! Collins hooks it in over Josh Green off the KJ pick-and-roll assist.
Here KJ finds a cutting Doug McDermott under the basket for two. McBuckets finished with six points and three assists in this one.
This should’ve been an and-one. Keita Bates-Diop finishes at the rim while Powell collides with him. KBD finished with 15 points, six rebounds, and two assists.
Zach has been a solid roller in the pick-and-roll game, this time finishing off the Graham assist.
PLAY OF THE GAME ALERT! Blake Wesley outsmarts Luka and the Mavs by inbounding the ball off Luka himself and slamming home a wide-open dunk! Blake finished with nine points, three rebounds, two assists, and a steal.
McBuckets has a finisher badge? Dougie with another fantastic cut inside the lane for a bucket off the KBD find.
Get ready for the next month and a half Spurs fans, the regular season will be over before you know it. Anyways, here are the full game highlights.