SAN ANTONIO – A huge performance from DeMar DeRozan lifted the San Antonio Spurs to a 113-108 overtime victory over the Dallas Mavericks (2-4) at the AT&T Center on Monday night.
The win is the second straight for the Spurs, who defeated the Los Angeles Lakers for the second time this season on Saturday night.
“He’s a good player and he loves those moments,” Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said of DeRozan. “He’s not afraid of failure and there are very few people who want to be in that position all the time. He’s one of those people.”
- DeMar “Buckets” DeRozan. Yes, that’s a corny nickname. But he’s earned a cool nickname.
- Aldridge and DeRozan combined for 54 of the Spurs’ 113 points.
- San Antonio held Dallas to just 18 points in the first quarter. You can credit the Spurs’ defense or the Mavs missing some easy buckets. Either way, it was nice to see.
- Dante Cunningham started his second straight game for the Spurs, bringing physical play and solid defense to the starting unit.
- San Antonio beat their state rivals. That’s always a good thing.
- The Spurs were nearly perfect from the free throw line, going 16-of-17 for the night.
- The Spurs had no answer for Dallas rookie sensation Luka Doncic, who had 31 points on the night to lead the team.
- In what should have been a night where the Spurs held a team below 100 points, poor defensive rotations and missed assignments got Dallas back into the game when they trailed by as many as 12 points in the fourth quarter.
Three Standout Players:
The guard is a player the Spurs have needed for a long time: A Kobe Bryant-like closer and a natural scorer. And the fans down in San Antonio are finding out what a special player DeMar DeRozan is.
DeRozan finished with a game-high 34 points on 12-of-21 shooting and hit all ten of his free throws. Despite missing two potential chances to put the game away in regulation, he stayed aggressive in the overtime period and his shot over Wes Matthews would ice the win.
“I just come in and do my job,” DeRozan said. “My job has always been to be a closer and I remember Dwane Casey use to give me a card with “closer” on it. That’s all I know.”
Aldridge rebounded from a subpar performance the last few outings and delivered when it counts. He got key rebounds and big buckets for the Spurs in the overtime period.
He finished with 20 points but shot just 6-of-17 from the floor. He hit two big free throws to give the Spurs a five-point lead in the final moments of overtime.
Pop and the Spurs will hope once the offense starts clicking that the “Mid-3” will start each pouring in their own big numbers.
“We can choose between a few games now with LA, Rudy, and him [DeRozan],” Popovich said. “We can always run something for someone but we haven’t had options like that.”
Gay finished with a double-double, posting 15 points and 11 rebounds on the night. He hit a big three-pointer for the Spurs to put them up double digits in the second half and also had four assists on the night.
But if you ask DeRozan, the Spurs can only get better and he’s optimistic about their chances when they do.
“There’s still a ton of stuff we’re putting together,” he said. “As soon as that gets to clicking and starting doing things consistently, we’ve got a chance to be a great team.”
The Spurs are now 4-2 on the season and will return to the court on Wednesday for a Halloween Night game against the Phoenix Suns (1-5) at 9:30 pm Central Time from the Talking Stick Resort Arena.