The San Antonio Spurs have scored 107.4 points per 100 possessions this season, the fourth highest mark in the league; only Portland, Houston and Miami, all potent offensive dynamos, are more efficient offensively.
And that's despite the fact that, well, the Spurs haven't been very good after timeouts, according to Deadspin.
San Antonio is scoring just 78 points per 100 possessions after timeouts, while the league average is 88.65. This puts them squarely in the bottom five in efficiency, ahead of just Cleveland, Milwaukee, Washington and Oklahoma City.
The Spurs have salvaged an elite offensive unit, primarily because they are leaps and bounds ahead of the majority of the league in the half-court. The two-time defending champion Miami Heat are the only team scoring more points per possession in the half-court.
Deadspin also looked at defensive efficiency after timeouts and in half-court possessions; the Spurs are the only team in the top three in both half-court and after timeout defensive efficiency.
The Spurs have allowed 71.2 points per 100 possessions after timeouts, which is just inconceivable for a professional basketball team. (Indiana's defense is average after timeouts, for reference.) Against a traditional half-court possession, the Spurs' defensive efficiency (79.2) is third in the entire NBA. They're a very, very good defensive team in any setting. Go figure.
So should we worry about this statistical trend, considering it contradicts the conventional wisdom that Gregg Popovich is an excellent in-game play caller?
No, not necessarily. Because the Spurs do this on a regular basis:
@orlstrev thanks for what, exactly? Haha.
Maybe this is due in part to the loss of Coach Bud who knew every play in the book and how to counter it.
@orlstrev oh, no problem. I wouldn't be too worried about this trend though.
@orlstrev their half-court offense is soooooo good that this almost doesn't matter. They're fourth in points per possession, regardless.
@quixem I sure don't wanna be worried, it's just so uncharacteristic. Still really early though.