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Spurs starters’ efforts not enough in heartbreaking loss to Pelicans

In a game that went down to the wire, the Spurs came up one point short.

NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at San Antonio Spurs Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The San Antonio Spurs and the New Orleans Pelicans faced off Friday night at the Frost Bank Center in what was a tight game from start to finish. The Spurs maintained the lead through the first half but found themselves tied after the third quarter. During the final minutes of the game, it looked like the Spurs were putting up a tough fight that might carry them to victory. However, missed free throws and a Zion Williamson layup off the glass with three seconds remaining put them down by one. On what looked like a scramble last play, Victor Wembanyama found himself in the lane and wide open cutting to the basket, but Devin Vassell did not see him. Vassell’s game-winner was no good, and the Spurs lost a heartbreaker.

Despite the loss, the young Spurs put together some highlights that included a mix of defense and buckets.

Devin led the Spurs in scoring with 28 points to go along with three rebounds, three assists, and a block. Devin has now scored 20+ in 8 of his last 10 games and has helped keep the Spurs afloat offensively.

Here Devin shows he can get to the rim with ease and finishes with a layup off the glass.

A key moment in the fourth: Devin nails the three in transition and sets the Frost Bank Center ablaze!

Fresh off winning Rookie of the Month, Victor was flirting with a triple-double by putting up 16 points, 14 rebounds, seven assists, three blocks, and steals. He somehow did not attempt a field goal in the final seven minutes, but was greatly impactful on the defensive end in all of his 28 minutes played.

In what looked like an easy hook shot for Wemby, he decides at the last second to dump it down to a rising Tre Jones for the mini alley-oop finish. Tre finished with 20 points, seven assists, seven rebounds, and a block.

Simply too easy. Malaki Branham draws three Pelicans defenders into the paint and finds a cutting Wemby who finishes one of the easier dunks of the season.

Jeremy Sochan was a monster on the glass against the Pels. He had a double-double (14 points, 16 rebounds) and also chipped in three assists with two steals. His impact is greatly improving each game, and it has made Spurs fans excited for the future. Oh, and he also out-performed Rising Star Dyson Daniels.

Anyway, here’s Jeremy slicing and dicing his way to the paint with a smooth finish.

Dennis Rodman vibes all around! Jeremy fights for the offensive board by wrestling the ball away from Naji Marshall, and then pump faking Jordan Hawkins for the easy finish.

Another incredible pass from Victor. After the great interception by Wemby, he’s not close enough to the basket after picking up his dribble, so he puts it up highoff the glass and a trailing Sochan immediately put-back slams it down.

Did you want a different angle? Here’s the Spurs’ bench reacting to that putback.

Julian Champagnie is known for his shooting on the perimeter, but here he rejects Jonas Valanciunas at the rim! Julian finished with five points, six rebounds, three assists, and three(!) blocks.

Juju slam! Julian drives into the paint and waits patiently for the Pelicans to react. He then sneaks in for a wide-open slam!

Blake Wesley gets in on the action and jams it home in transition! He finished with four points, six assists, and three boards. He is looking more like a future great lockdown slasher!

And finally, here are the full game highlights.

The Spurs look to bounce back against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday.