Saturday, November 26, 2016

Spurs barely win anemic Game 2 dogfight, 113-109 (2-0).

The Spurs came out strong in Game 2, with both Pau Gasol and Kawhi Leonard surging early. Both teams played far from their best, though, shooting poorly from 3PT territory, committing too many fouls and turnovers, and playing hot-potato with the lead.

Somehow, despite the Warriors claiming the lead late, the Spurs held on by an inch in the 4th quarter, capitalizing once again with three additional points at the charity stripe than Golden State. The Spurs ultimately won by 4 points, but not after collectively sighing "Whew!" when Draymond Green's wide-open 3PTer surprisingly missed to the chagrin of the Oakland crowd inside "Roar"acle Arena. Green and Andre Iguodala sparked the comeback for the Warriors, who trailed early by 10, more so the former as Iguodala had an awful first half.

However, both teams kept missing shots and they were quality chances to claim control of this game: from layups to open three-pointers, to perceivably-easy dunks at the rim.

Steph Curry had a disastrous showing with only 8 points on 3-15 shooting, despite 16 assists. Klay Thompson had 24 to lead the Warriors, but his shot was off too. This result was highly unexpected, after both teams lit up the scoreboard in Game 1, but anything can happen in the NBA!

Tony Parker went scoreless in this game, and MCW got into early foul trouble, still able to pester Steph Curry on defense enough to somehow get the Spurs a 2-0 lead heading back to San Antonio.

Meanwhile, Pau Gasol looked sharp in the first half, but fell off later, finishing with 28 points (scored 18 in the first half). Kawhi Leonard had 34 points and 12 rebounds. Dewayne Dedmon hauled in 11, playing strong on the boards (with plenty of shots missing), and drew a foul on a drive to the rim that put the Spurs up by 2 late. Cue Green's missed three-pointer, and MCW iced the outcome at the line.

This ugly game should not overshadow the advantage that San Antonio has earned, being up 2-0 with two games upcoming on their home court. This series could very well wind up being another sweep, which nobody would have predicted at the outset. The Warriors are reeling at this point, and something has to give if they are going to stay in this showdown for the crown of the west. If any positive quality can be taken from this game, it's that the Warriors played far from their best and still almost won the game. Had the Spurs lost, it would have made their own early proficiency an afterthought.