Wednesday night, Gregg Popovich lead his San Antonio Spurs to a franchise record 19-straight wins over the Golden State Warriors by a final score of 111-90. Every time the Dubs would have somewhat of a scoring run, the Spurs ran right back and went on a run of their own. As much as it seemed like the Warriors could be getting back in the game, this game was over from the start. It’s going to be a problem when you only have two healthy starters in your backcourt.
After starting out with a small 4-0 spurt, the Warriors had a little bit of a bounce in their step. Then, however, Popovich called a timeout to deal with the small little mistakes that he saw, and his team went on a 16-2 run, and never looked back. Playing the Dallas Mavericks Tuesday night was a hard-fought overtime victory, and the Warriors seemed to run out of gas, unable to compete with the Spurs. At the end of the first, they trailed the Spurs 31-18.
San Antonio is an elite team both defensively and offensively, and they would’t falter to the Warriors Wednesday night.
The closest that the game got after the deficit in the first was 74-67 in the third quarter. After that, however, the Spurs finished on a 13-0 run to extend their lead to 20. They started the fourth quarter with more offensive fireworks and never looked back. Like I said, this game was over from the start.
The only players who had any offensive magic for the Warriors tonight were Jordan Crawford, who finished with 16 points and Marreese Speights, who scored 22. Other than that, they didn’t have much luck at all attacking the basket. The Spurs, on the other hand, continued to pound the Warriors on the inside. When Speights leads your scoring, that may be a problem.
Marreese Speights has a team-high 18 points, his second-highest scoring output as a Warrior
— GSWStats (@gswstats) April 3, 2014
Weaknesses that were apparent in the playoffs were also apparent in this game. The Warriors had no one to guard San Antonio’s more skilled guards. Putting Klay Thompson on Tony Parker has its benefits, but that leaves Stephen Curry on Danny Green, or Kawhi Leonard. Without a healthy Andre Iguodala, who missed this game, that’s not going to cut it.
Also, Jermaine O’Neal wasn’t able to match up well with Tim Duncan. Mo Speights, who isn’t known for his defensive game, also had a lot of trouble guarding some of the Spurs bigs. The only reason this game is closer than the final score indicates is because the Spurs were not making many of their 3-pointers.
In addition to the mismatch problems, there was a problem on offense as well. Because every player from the Spurs defends, the Warriors were not able to get that same caliber offense that they usually get. Green can stay on Stephen Curry, and Kawhi Leonard can stop Thompson’s fade-away jump shots. The only thing that the Spurs didn’t have an answer for was Speights stretching out to 15-16 feet, but they didn’t need one.
As long as they were attacking the mismatches on one end, and easily taking care of the Warriors’ biggest offensive threats on the other end, there was no need to deal with any offensive life that the Warriors exhibited.
One good thing to come of tonight for the Warriors? The Memphis Grizzlies, who have been breathing down their necks in the standings, lost to the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight.
Tags: Golden State Warriors