Before Tip-Off: Splitter available, but might not play


Tip-off will be early tonight as the San Antonio Spurs and Utah Jazz meet once more in the second TSgame of their first round series at the AT&T Center. The Spurs won the first meeting on Sunday, as the Jazz prepare to try to ‘steal one’ in San Antonio.

For the Spurs, they may or may not be without one of their own as Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said forward Tiago Splitter, who sprained his left wrist in game one, is available to play only if the team really needs him tonight. However Coach Popovich would prefer to rest the Brazilian big man if the game allows it.

“I think he’d be a lot better this weekend than tonight,” said Popovich of Splitter. DeJuan Blair will take Splitter’s minutes tonight so long as Splitter isn’t needed in the game.

The Jazz have gotten the first game off of their minds, as head coach Tyrone Corbin discussed in his pregame interview, “we know what to expect now,” said Corbin.

“This is a great experienced ball club,” continued Corbin on the Spurs. “We’ve got to make sure we get the ball down the floor,” said Corbin of the Jazz’ plan to continue to push the pace on offense.

As for the big man lineup of Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, and Derrick Favors, coach Corbin said the Jazz might insert it a little earlier than the third quarter, “I have to watch it.” Though that lineup is effective offensively, coach Corbin said it has its setbacks because defensively the players aren’t used to running out to the perimeter to play defense possession after possession.