Monday, June 13, 2005

Spurs Halfway to Championship

This is the story I wanted to write. The Spurs kept home-court advantage and head to Detroit with a 2-0 lead.
Unfortunately, Sunday night’s game was not exactly exciting. For one, the Spurs never trailed and, in fact, were up by double-digits for almost the entire game.

What was telling, however, was when the Pistons pulled within 8 in the fourth quarter. Popovich, who might be better at calling timeouts than any other coach in the league, stopped the game right there and the Spurs stopped the run. Within minutes of the timeout, the Spurs were back up by 20 and trash-time began.

Given how this Pistons team handled last-year’s Lakers with relative ease, I'm amazed by how incredible the Spurs have been. They made Detroit look positively amateur at times. Robert Horry (a back-up, mind you) had steals on consecutive plays and Bowen and Ginobili had open threes at will.

If Detroit is going to get back into this series, they’re going to need to figure out the Spurs ball movement. All game, the Pistons seemed to miss the open man and the Spurs capitalized. Even admitting my bias as a Spurs fan, I have a hard time seeing the Pistons winning all three at home. Either the series ends in Detroit or it comes back to San Antonio with the Spurs up 3-2 and ends in Game Six.

I have one more prediction. Before this series is over, everyone will know that Tim Duncan isn’t the only superstar on this team. Manu Ginobili is a stud and is the difference maker in this series. ABC advertises the Finals as where stars are made. Ginobili is this year's star.


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