LAS VEGAS -- After one so-so game and one bad game, Nando De Colo broke out, helping guide the San Antonio Spurs to a 96-87 victory over the Atlanta Hawks, Monday night. De Colo and Aron Baynes each had 19 points to lead a very balanced scoring attack which saw four Spurs in double figures.
De Colo came out aggressive as his eight first quarter points kept the Spurs from falling too far behind. San Antonio settled down in the second quarter, holding Atlanta to just 14 points after they scored 25 in the first. Summer League head coach Ime Udoka said he was pleased with how De Colo bounced back on offense, but was more impressed with the job he did guarding Atlanta's wing players.
"He really got up in to John Jenkins and took on the challenge on the defensive end," Udoka said. "He’s had Jeffrey Taylor, Terrence Ross, John Jenkins, so a lot of good players. I like how he approached him defensively tonight."
While he spent the bulk of the first two games playing off the ball, De Colo ran the point for a long stretch of the game after Cory Joseph aggravated an old back injury. With back up Chris Wright out with strep throat, De Colo had to step in. Udoka said Joseph would likely be ready for the Spurs next game on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Aron Baynes also had his best game of Summer League, adding 15 rebounds and two blocked shots to his 19 points. After Sunday's loss to the Raptors, Udoka said he was happy with Baynes' aggression inside, especially with the thinner Lucas Nogueira covering him for much of the game.
"We want him to use his strength inside and like I said he uses his strength advantage against a thin body like that he’s going to be good getting right to the basket every time." Udoka said.
Marcus Denmon also had by far his best game of Summer League, scoring 14 points. Deshaun Thomas conitnued to show his offensive chops, scoring 17 points in a variety of ways. Hollis Thompson, known mostly for his ability to shoot, only scored seven points but chipped in 11 rebounds and four assists. Dexter Pittman also showed a mean streak on defense, blocking a game high four shots.
The Spurs next play Wednesday, which is the start of the new Summer League tournament format. Their opponent and game time won't be determined until Tuesday night.
Very impressed by what I saw from Baynes. Didn't think he had that kind of game in him. He kept getting good looks at the basket and his baby hooks dropped in tonight when he used either hand. Thomas continued to impress. Nando played really well tonight and helped the Spurs get good ball movement on several possessions. Overall, really like what I saw from the Spurs tonight. Easily their best and most complete game in summer league thus far.