Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Spurs edge Raptors on the road as DeRozan goes cold.

Kawhi Leonard was tasked with defending DeMarr DeRozan in this game and he mostly delivered, save for a couple fast break baskets that Kawhi had no real chance of defending. DeRozan and Kyle Lowry were in sync on a few alley oops as well late in the game that was neck and neck throughout, but DeRozan had two tough shot attempts over Kawhi that rattled out of the rim and arguably three far easier attempts that he whiffed on, as his team fell behind late.

It looked like the Raptors game to lose, as Pau Gasol was burdened by foul trouble and Tony Parker struggled with turnovers, Lowry snatching the ball a few times leading to easy fast break shots, despite Parker shooting better than lately.

Eventually, the never-say-die mentality of the Spurs got the job done as they sneaked out of Toronto with a 107-99 victory. Tiago Splitter played well despite his recent struggles and got an offensive rebound after a jumper by Parker missed to give the Spurs a commanding 4 point lead with seconds left in the game.

DeRozan shot a disappointing 9-26 from the field, not helped by Kyle Lowry's 3-11 performance. Meanwhile, Gasol hit some savvy shots down low in the face of adversity and Kawhi "The Claw" Leonard claimed 13 rebounds to go with 19 points. Danny Green also played well, stepping up when no one else was playing well, even though he probably shot a bit too much, but that could be argued is his role.

Thaddeus Young also had some tough shots at the rim that went in for him and some nice pick-and-roll deliveries with Parker and Ginobili (who played well off the bench, and even took on the PG role during Parker's butterfingers period). This win marks 5 straight for San Antonio, who now host the young-blooded Lakers tomorrow night, ending their road trip on a high note after this potential NBA Finals showdown.