SAN ANTONIO – With the San Antonio Spurs facing the possibility of moving further down the Western Conference standings and trailing the injury-depleted Memphis Grizzlies in the fourth quarter, Tony Parker knew he needed to turn back the clock.
Parker scored eight straight points in the final quarter to spark the Spurs to a 100-98 victory over the Grizzlies at the AT&T Center on Monday night.
The victory snapped a two-game losing streak for San Antonio, who closed out their three-game homestand with a 1-2 record. LaMarcus Aldridge returned after missing Saturday’s game against the Lakers with a right ankle injury.
Here is what went good and bad for the Spurs, as well as three standout players: Parker, Kyle Anderson, and Davis Bertans.
- The Spurs broke out of their funk, they snapped a two-game losing streak. Prior to Monday’s win, the Silver and Black had lost six of their previous eight games.
- San Antonio’s bench had 62 of their 100 points. Danny Green was a massive part of that as he matched his jersey number, scoring 14 points and going 3-for-4 from three-point range.
- Tony Parker looked like the TP9 of old.
- San Antonio nearly lost to a Memphis Grizzlies (18-45) squad who had lost 13 straight games coming into Monday’s contest. Despite the Spurs looking a step slow all night, they did manage to squeak out the win.
- Aldridge struggled in his return, scoring just seven points on 2-of-8 shooting.
- Pau Gasol also struggled as went up against his brother Marc, going 0-for-4 from the field, scoring just two points.
Three Standout Players:
Tony Parker: The Spurs got a vintage performance from Tony Parker, who turned back the clock and had a night for the ages when the Silver and Black were in desperate need of a win.
Parker scored a game-high 23 points, including eight straight in the fourth quarter. With San Antonio trailing by seven, Parker put the team on his back as he slashed his way to the basket, assisted on buckets, and controlled the pace of the game for his team. While Dejounte Murray may be a star in the making, Parker proved his veteran experience is still key to San Antonio’s success.
Kyle Anderson: One Spur who also sparked his team and the crowd was Kyle Anderson. The former UCLA Bruin continued his breakout season with another solid performance.
Anderson finished with 11 points on 3-of-5 shooting. The 24-year-old Anderson had back-to-back steals leading to points. However, his most impressive was an alley-oop dunk to Davis Bertans. Anderson has really shown his growth in the absence of Kawhi Leonard and it led the Silver and Black to a win on Monday.
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Davis Bertans: The silver lining about the Spurs have so many injuries is the growth of the young players such as Anderson, Bryn Forbes, and Davis Bertans. Once again, Bertans proved he can be ready at a minutes notice.
He scored 17 points and despite going 1-for-5 from three-point range, the three he did hit proved to be huge. It put the Spurs up six with just under two minutes to play. While it may not be ideal, Bertans shows why Pop respects and gives him the playing time: he’s earned it.
The Spurs are now 37-27 on the season and will return to the court on Thursday when they open a tough stretch of three straight on the road. Their first is against the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors (49-14) at 9:30 p.m. at Oracle Arena.