Don’t underestimate the underdogs because they are still dogs at the end of the day. Tonight the San Antonio Spurs (9-18) proved they still possess that grit that we saw at the beginning of the season. I’m sure the Cleveland Cavaliers (17-11) were not assuming they would be departing from AT&T center with another loss on their backs. After being favored to win by 6 the Cavs fell 112-111 to the Spurs.
Setting the Tone
Keldon Johnson’s block in the final seconds of the game was the lifeline for San Antonio. However, there were a series of events that kept the Spurs’ active competitors in this game.
From the beginning, the Spur’s offense was able to penetrate the Cavalier’s defense and make a few contested shots in the paint. They seem to have had better communication in transition and when passing. Their ability to swing the ball around the court and find their man on the inside allowed them to maintain momentum.
When they were stopped by Cleveland defenders they controlled the pace bringing the ball back out. Josh Richardson embracing his three-pointer gave the Spurs a wider range of scoring options. Richardson ended the night as the leading scorer with 24 points shooting 71% from the three.
— JazzTamir (@JazzTamir1) December 13, 2022
This is one of the first games where the Spurs leave the opponents treading behind them. When competing with the Cavaliers you can never get too comfortable though. In the fourth is when fans started biting their nails as the eastern conference team began chipping away at the lead.
The Spurs as a whole did well at limiting turnovers and being aggressive with obtaining rebounds on both ends to provide themselves with second chances. The Cavs outscored the Spurs by 13 in the fourth highlighting why their play in the first three quarters tends to make or break a team with injuries, and minimal rotational players.
Scoring for both teams.
That game went down to the wire pic.twitter.com/sEr9sG692l
— Paul Garcia (@PaulGarciaNBA) December 13, 2022
Spurs Cavaliers Goes Down to The Wire
Clearly, Johnson was not going to give up simply because they were down to the wire. He completed the night with one infamous block along with 21 points, and 6 rebounds.
Despite still suffering the repercussions of not a fully healthy team, many players are stepping up to contribute. It’s always a team effort in succeeding. For instance, Devin Vassell shot a clutch pull-up jump shot at the 2:16 mark that got the Spurs to 112 before bullying it out to the end.
Out To Defy the Odds
At the end of the day, it came to a pure heart. Do you want it? Do you have that “dog” in you? San Antonio showed why you can never come into the AT&T center too sure. Teams can’t base wins off of circumstances or odds because this group is out to defy them. What were your thoughts on the Spurs vs. Cavaliers game?