A week ago, the Los Angeles Clippers were ahead by 51 points in a game against the Los Angeles Lakers. Friday, those same Lakers came into San Antonio as an 18-point underdog against the Spurs. If a person in Las Vegas was gambling and put money on San Antonio to win by 18 or more points, then they made a successful gambling attempt. The Spurs defeated the Lakers 119-85 in a blow out that came from the beginning, as the Spurs led by as many as 17 points in the first quarter. Here were a few takeaways from the win.
A blow out from the beginning
If you looked at the final score, it might surprise you that the Lakers actually held a 6-3 lead with 8:23 minutes left in the first quarter. However, that would be their largest lead, as the Spurs outscored the Lakers 26-8 the rest of the way, to end the first quarter with a 15-point lead. By the half, the Spurs took a 27-point lead into the break with 12 players already receiving playing time, and no player playing more than 15:48 minutes in the first half.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Spurs held the Lakers to 85 points, 34% shooting, 4-of-21 shooting from three, and the Spurs outrebounded the Lakers 64-37. Of the Lakers 91 shots, 55 were contested by the Spurs’ defense which forced them to shoot 36%, while only 36 were uncontested, but Los Angeles only shot 31% on those attempts.
Sharing the minutes
By the end of the third quarter, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Tiago Splitter, Danny Green (15 points), Kawhi Leonard, and Manu Ginobili were all done playing for the night. No core player played more than 21:57 minutes overall on the night. Here were the Spurs’ core players’ minutes from most to least.
Green (21:57), Belinelli (20:45), Leonard (20:30), Splitter (19:23), Boris Diaw (16:06), Duncan (15:01), Patty Mills (14:37), Parker (14:07), Ginobili (14:03).
With more minutes for the reserves, the reserves made the most of their opportunity as each received more than 14 minutes of playing time. In his 25 minutes, Matt Bonner recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Aron Baynes scored 12 points, including three dunks, and Cory Joseph scored 11 points and threw seven assists. Per Elias Sports, the Spurs set another new NBA record with all 13 active players recording at least one points, one rebound, and one assist in a single game.
The Spurs recorded 36 assists on 48 made baskets, a 75% assist mark. The Spurs also threw 10 secondary assists, and three assists that led to free throw attempts. The Spurs took 52 uncontested shots (shooting 56%), and just 54 contested shots (shooting 36%), numbers that show just how much their passing and cutting sliced through the Lakers’ defense throughout the night.
A look into the 9-game winning streak
During their 9-game winning streak, the Spurs are beating teams by an average of 15.0 points per game. The Spurs are scoring 111.6 points, shooting 48.9% from the field, 44.9% from three, collecting 29.4 assists, and only turning the ball over 14.7 times per game. Defensively, they’re holding teams to 96.6 points per game during the streak.
The Spurs are ranked third in Offensive Rating with 112.8 points per 100 possessions and ranked second in Defensive Rating by holding teams to 98.0 points per 100 possessions during the streak. The Los Angeles Clippers are the only other team with a longer winning streak than the Spurs at the moment, with ten wins in a row.
Parker, Ginobili, and Duncan passed the Lakers great trio of Magic Johnson, Michael Cooper, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (490 wins) with 491 all-time wins together. Only the Boston Celtics trio of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, and Robert Parish hold the record for most wins by a trio with 540 wins.
Where San Antonio Stands
· Regular Season: 49-16 (Lead the NBA)
· Home Record: 25-8
· Vs. Opponents with -.500 records: 26-2
· Vs. The Western Conference: 27-10
· Post All-Star Break Record: 11-1 (Lead the NBA)
· 26 of the Spurs’ 49 wins have been by 10 or more points
· The Spurs are 12-0 when they grab 50 or more rebounds in a game
(All Stats and Player Tracking data via NBA.com/stats)