Milwaukee Bucks' center Andrew Bogut weighed in on which team he feels is the most impressive and let's just say he scored some major points with San Antonio Spurs' fans:
The Bucks are a good team to ask. They’ve played Utah, Denver, Orlando, Miami, Dallas and San Antonio this month. Keyon Dooling still gives the nod to the Lakers because of their depth and their status as reigning champions, but Andrew Bogut says the San Antonio Spurs are the most impressive team they’ve faced so far.
“[The Spurs] have a unique system, where they really spread the scoring load,” Bogut said. “Then at the end of the game they’ve got Ginobili. I think they’re playing real well. That was tough for us. ... They’re going to be a tough matchup in the playoffs.” (source ESPN.com)
Bogut would know first-hand about the Spurs being a tough team. In the last meeting between the Spurs and the Bucks it took a Ginoibili last-second shot to seal the victory for San Antonio.
Now will someone please tell Dooling he might want to reconsider his pick.
Milwaukee Bucks' center Andrew Bogut weighed in on which team he feels is the most impressive and let's just say he scored some major points with San Antonio Spurs' fans:
|SPURS||Manu Ginobili 19.7||Tim Duncan 9.7||Tony Parker 7.1|
|NUGGETS||Carmelo Anthony 24.0||Carmelo Anthony 8.3||Chauncey Billups 5.4|
The San Antonio Spurs will look to push their winning streak to double-digits for the second time this season when they host the Denver Nuggets at the AT&T Center tonight as they conclude a 3-game homestand.
During their first game, Carmelo Anthony made a shot at the buzzer but it was ruled off for an offensive foul when Manu Ginobili stepped in front to draw the charge. Coach George Karl's public comments about the play led to a $25,000 fine from the NBA. The Spurs won that game 113-112.
The Nuggets might have a better shot at ending San Antonio's winning streak this time as they expect some key players returning to the lineup. Chauncey Billups, Chris Andersen and Kenyon Martin could play when the Nuggets gun for their second straight win.
The Spurs (24-3) knocked off a short-handed Phoenix Suns team 118-110 on Monday, to extend their winning streak to nine games. Tim Duncan had 20 points and 15 rebounds in that game. He is averaging just 14.1 points and 9.7 rebounds this season but has averaged 20.3 points and 13.6 rebounds over the last three games.
The Spurs haven't had two winning streaks of at least 10 games in a season since 2003-2004, when they had a 13-game and an 11-game winning streaks.
The Nuggets (16-10) bounced back from the loss to the Spurs with a 115-113 win over Minnesota last Saturday. Anthony had 24 points and a key late block while Lawson added 23 points and nine assists to help the Nuggets get the win.
Lawson has started the last three games in place of Billups and averaged 18.0 points and 8.0 assists.
San Antonio's longest win streak of the season was a 12-game run from Nov. 1-24.
KEYS TO THE GAME
Defense -- Contain Anthony on the offensive end, control the boards and keep up with the Nuggets' running game.
Offense -- They are currently third in the league in scoring and have seven players averaging in double digits. They have a good mix of inside and outside game with Anthony, Nene, Martin, J.R. Smith and Ty Lawson plus Chauncey is back as the team's starting point guard.
Defense -- Defend the Spurs' drive and kick game, contain Duncan on the inside. Limit Ginobili, Parker and Jefferson's dribble penetrations and be wary of the Spurs' outside shooters.
Spurs -- James Anderson - stress fracture (out), George Hill - toe (day-to-day)
Nuggets -- Chris Andersen - back (game time decision) , Kenyon Martin - knee (game time decision)
However, the Spurs are playing some of their best basketball right now and are equally determined to extend their winning streak to 10 games. Expect another close game with the Spurs winning it, 111-108.
Follow Robby Lim on Twitter @RobbyLim21
• Congratulations to Roxanne Alvarez (aka @simmonslover on Twitter) for winning two free tickets courtesy of tiqiq.com and Project Spurs to tomorrow's San Antonio Spurs-Denver Nuggets game. However, do not fret as we will be giving out another pair of free tickets to a Spurs home game next month. All you have to do it follow @projectspurstiq on Twitter to enter. Easy huh?
• The San Antonio Spurs will face a healthier Denver Nuggets team as Kenyon Martin, Chauncey Billups and Chris Andersen will return to action. This should be an exciting game seeing how the last time these two team faced off it took Manu Ginobili drawing the offensive foul after nailing the winning shot to secure the victory for the Spurs.
• The Spurs beat the Phoenix Suns last night, albeit a depleted Suns team with their recent trade to acquire Marcin Gortat, Vince Carter and Mikael Pietrus from the Orlando Magic, and as one scout pointed out, the moves makes them just like the Spurs:
“Well, it looks like they (Suns) are trying to change the culture,” the scout said. “I suppose they look at this as making them tougher. But I think that’s kind of interesting. The (San Antonio) Spurs are pretty tough, right?”
We’ll answer that one in the affirmative.
“The Suns swept the Spurs a few months ago,” the scout pointed out. “Swept them. Does that means the Spurs weren’t tough last spring, but are now? Has that much changed in terms of what people say is toughness?
As they say, imitation is the best form of flattery.
• How efficient are the Spurs? Well according to the Huffington Post the Miami Heat are but the Spurs could lead the NBA in efficiency:
Who are the least efficiently run teams in basketball (i.e. the teams who spend the most wastefully above the luxury tax threshold)?
The analysis relied on efficiency differential, since this projects future success (or failure) better than current won-loss records. Still one might be interested to know... if we project wins from current won-loss records, then the San Antonio Spurs -- with a cost per win of $0.931 million -- lead the NBA.
• Express News' Tim Griffin hands out his Spurs first-third report card on the team. How did they do? Find out HERE.
• Spurs' gaurd Gary Neal had a fantastic game against the Phoenix Suns scoring 22 points off the bench in a 118-110 victory. Here is what Spurs' coach Gregg Popovich had to say about Neal's performance:
(video courtesy of woai.com)
Hoy estaremos repasando los últimos juegos, que digo juegos, victorias!…de la semana de los Spurs.
Listos? Ahí les va! Definitivamente hemos tenido un victorioso comienzo ya que los Spurs llevan ganados 24 juegos y tan solo 3 derrotas. Es bastante impresionante el hecho de que los Spurs sea el equipo que mas victorias lleva en lo que va del año. Eso muestra la preparación y sobre todo el empeño que han estado poniendo. Realmente veo altas posibilidades de que salgamos campeones esta temporada.
En fin amigos, comenzamos con el juego de la semana pasada, donde se enfrentaron los Spurs contra los Golden State Warriors el miércoles 8 de Diciembre. Este juego realmente, en mi opinión fue lo que se esperaba. Los Spurs mostraron ser los campeones que siempre han sido anotando 29 puntos en el primer cuarto mientras los Warriors tan solo 19. Lamentablemente para los Warriors, ellos jamas lograron recuperarse ya que finalmente fueron derrotados 111-94, fue una diferencia bastante grande de 17 puntos. Para este juego los 3 mayores contribuyentes de canastas por parte de los Spurs fue Tony Parker con 19, George Hill con 17, Dejuan Blair con 15. En asistencias los mayores contribuidores fueron Tony Parker con 9 y Manu Ginobili con 8. Y la buena racha no termina ahí porque como testigos de los últimos juegos sabemos que los Spurs vienen enérgicos esta temporada.
El jueves de la semana pasada los Spurs jugaron contra los Atlanta Hawks, de nuevo, para los Spurs, otro juego facilito, ya que igual que con los Warriors en el primer cuarto llevaron la delantera, justo a medio tiempo están empatados, pero agarrense por que los Spurs vienen bravos. Aun que los Hawks pusieron de su parte para intentar derrotar a los Spurs, su empeño fue en vano, finalmente una vez mas los Spurs salen victoriosos, ganando 108 a 92, por una diferencia de 16 puntos.
Y el siguiente domingo de ese juego, que fue el 12 de diciembre, los Spurs salieron ganando nuevamente en su confrontación contra los Trail Blazers de Portland. Este juego comenzó tempranito, durante la tarde en el AT&T center. Para este juego quien anoto mas canastas fue George Hill ya que contribuyo con un impresionante puntuaje de 22 puntos. Quien le siguió el paso fue Manu Ginobili con 18 puntos, y Tony Parker con 14 puntos y 6 asistencias. Terminando el juego a favor de los Spurs 78-95.
Quien nos dejo con la piel erizada y llenos de emoción justo a final de juego fue Manu Ginobili el pasado miércoles 15 de diciembre en el juego contra los Milwaukee Bucks. El juego se mantuvo bastante emocionante, ya que aunque los Spurs llevaron la delantera durante la mayor parte del juego, los Milwaukee Bucks mostraban ser persistentes en intentar ganarnos. Finalmente a unos segundos del final del juego quedamos empatados y fue durante el ultimo segundo de juego que mete Ginobili una canasta así logrando desempatar el puntuaje entre ambos equipos y quedando los Spurs como campeones 90-92.
Y tambien se enfrentaron los Spurs con los Nuggets de Denver el pasado jueves, 16 diciembre. Aunque el juego no fue en tierras San Antonianas, esto no fue obstáculo para que los Spurs derrotaran a los Nuggets. Claramente se vio durante el primer cuarto que los Nuggets venían determinados a ganarnos, ya que durante el primer cuarto nos llevaron la delantera en puntuaje de 37-28. Pero finalmente los Spurs demostraron estar demasiado preparados ganando este emocionante juego 113-112. Nuestro mas grande contribuidor para este juego fue Tim Duncan con un grande total de 28 puntos contribuidos. Tony Parker le siguió con 24 puntos y un total de 9 asistencias y Manu Ginobili con 16 puntos.
Finalmente los Spurs una vez mas salen victoriosos contra los Grizzlies de Memphis ganando 112 a 106 en tiempo extra y contra los Suns de Phoenix, ganando 118 a 110. Tony Parker le siguió con 37 puntos contra Memphis y gano el premio jugador de la semana en la NBA. Felicidades Tony! Les deseamos muchísima suerte a los Spurs de San Antonio, aun que parece ser que no la necesitan con lo preparados que demuestran estar. También de parte de la familia de Projects Spurs les deseamos una Feliz Navidad y un Prospero Año Nuevo!
Dominique Archie, Lance Thomas, Carldell "Squeaky" Johnson, Michael Joiner and assistant coaches Taylor Jenkins and Alex Lloyd of the Austin Toros (the San Antonio Spurs D-League affiliate) gave Project Spurs and Toros Nation their Christmas wishes and what they want to see under the Christmas tree this weekend. Enjoy!
The San Antonio Spurs won their 9th game in a row, beating the Phoenix Suns 118-110. The Suns played short-handed again following their blockbuster trade with Orlando Magic over the weekend.
Coach Alvin Gentry used just eight players against the Spurs, a night after an impressive victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Spurs used their depth to their advantage and remains on top of the NBA standings with a 24-3 record.
What are the numbers that stood out in this Spurs' recent win? Let's find out!
80 - The Spurs had a huge advantage on free throw attempts and they capitalized on it, making 24-30 (80%) of their foul shots. The Suns connected on 12-16 (75%) of their free throws.
53.5 - The Suns had a good shooting night overall as they hit 46-86 (53.5%) of their shots from the floor. The Spurs weren't that bad either making 43-89 (48.3%) of their field goals.
43 - San Antonio controlled the boards, out rebounding the Suns 43-35.
40 - The Spurs outscored the Suns 40-24 in the third quarter to turn a close game into a blowout.
27 - Both teams were atrocious from the 3-point line, the Spurs made just 8-29 (27.6%) of their three pointers while the Suns shot 6-22 (27.3%) from beyond the arc. Jared Dudley had a game-high 27 points for Phoenix. The Spurs had 27 assists for the game, the Suns had 23.
20-15 - The Suns had no answer for Tim Duncan who had a great all-around game. The Big Fundamental had 20 points, 15 boards, six assists, three blocks and two steals in 31 minutes of action.
14 - Chris Quinn scored five points, dished out three assists and grabbed a rebound in 15 minutes of playing time. The Spurs are now 14-0 when Quinn plays.
9 - The Spurs had nine steals, three coming from Manu Ginobili. The Suns had five as a team.
8 - For the third straight game, Antonio McDyess was perfect from the floor. He is now 8-8 on field goal attempts since the game against the Denver Nuggets. He had four points and four rebounds for the Spurs.
6 - The Spurs had six players in double figures, including all their starters. Matt Bonner added six points and four rebounds off the bench.
0 - Richard Jefferson, Neal, Bonner and Quinn had zero turnovers for the entire game.
Rookie Watch: Gary Neal is taking advantage of George Hill's absence, He scored a team-high 22 points and had three rebounds, two assists and one steal in 31 minutes of action. Tiago Splitter received another DNP-CD (Did Not Play-Coach's Decision).
What's Next? The Spurs will conclude their three game homestand when they host the Denver Nuggets at the AT&T Center on Wednesday.
Follow Robby Lim on Twitter @RobbyLim21
• Want free San Antonio Spurs tickets? Of course you do! We here at Project Spurs are giving away free tickets to either the Denver Nuggets or Los Angeles Lakers game. How do you get them? Find out by clicking HERE.
• The San Antonio Spurs keep winning and all of the NBA and sports world is taking notice including Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki:
With a record of 21-5 (13-4 at home), which included a 12-game win streak, much has gone right. Yet, the Mavs have yet to spend a day alone in first place in the Southwest Division, and after going 14-1 over their last 15 games, they’ve barely scratched a couple of games off the San Antonio Spurs’ lead.
“Not even that,” said Dirk Nowitzki, noting the Mavs have moved from three games back to two entering Monday's games. “They’re playing well. They’ve been fortunate on a couple games. Obviously, we’ve been following them and they snuck out in overtime again (Saturday night against Memphis). It almost seems like they’ve changed their philosophy around a little bit. They’re playing a lot more offense and they’re giving up more points.
“But, for some reason, the Spurs just always win. It doesn’t matter. They used to win 75-74 and now they win 110-109.” (source ESPN.com)
I'm sure this is music to Spurs fans' ears all across the globe.
• During this current winning streak, the Spurs have had some dramatic finishes against the Milwaukee Bucks and Denver Nuggets. In both games, the wins were secured because of Manu Ginobili's clutch play. Here is what Ginobili had to say about the Spurs' last-second victories:
• Express News' Tim Griffin has a food suggestion for the Spurs and if you are health conscious then you probably don't want to read this. Ahh forget it! You know you want to see what it is! Click HERE.
• American Express has partnered with the NBA after a five year absence and it's partly due to the Spurs:
Mark Tatum, the executive vice president for global marketing partnerships at the N.B.A, said, “The resurgence of the Knicks, nytimes.com), the , the Lakers, the Celtics: there are very exciting story lines and people want to be associated with the N.B.A. right now.” (source
• The Spurs continue to give back to the San Antonio community this time by donating a portion of the tickets sales for the upcoming game against the Mavericks to San Antonio libraries:
If you’re a library fan and a Spurs fan, here’s a way to beat the holiday shopping full court press and feel good about your gift.
Friday, January 14, 2011, is San Antonio Public Library Night with the Spurs — meaning that a portion of the proceeds from ticket sales for that night will benefit the Library. The Spurs are playing the Dallas Mavericks that evening. (source bizjournals.com)
• Speaking of giving back to San Antonio, DeJuan Blair or should I say Santa Blair gave Christmas gifts for area San Antonio children:
(videos courtesy of woai.com)
The San Antonio Spurs host the Phoenix Suns tonight in the AT&T Center.
The Suns (13-13) enter tonight's contest with a less than full roster as their new players (Vince Carter and Marcin Gortat) via a trade with the Orlando Magic will not join the Suns until later in the week. Also, Steve Nash is back from nursing a neck injury and is still showing the NBA he still has plenty left in his tank as is Grant Hill who is having a solid season for the Suns despite his age and past injuries.
The Spurs (22-3) already beat the Suns in November, 112-110, with Tim Duncan scored 25 points and 17 rebounds and hopes to duplicate that performance. The Spurs are also on a an eight game winning streak and look to maintain their status as the best team in the NBA.
To talk about tonight's game, I turn to fellow Bloguin NBA blogger Jim Neveau of Suns Rising. Suns Rising is one of Bloguin's newest NBA blogs and it is a must visit not just for Suns fans but for any fan of the NBA.
In this Q&A, Jim gives us his thoughts on the recent Suns trade, tonight's game, his take on the Spurs-Suns rivalry, and more. To read the Q&A I did with Jim click HERE to visit Suns Rising.
Jeff: I got to get your reaction to the recent trade the Suns made with the Orlando Magic. Do you like it or not and how does it change the Suns outlook this season?
Looking harder at the Turkoglu element, it is pretty apparent that Hedo was not going to fit the role that Phoenix wanted him to. They viewed him as some type of "utility infielder" who could play any position, including power forward. Truth is that Turkoglu is not well suited to playing at that position, and he is way more comfortable at small forward. Unfortunately for him, the Suns have a glut of players like Grant Hill and Jared Dudley at the three position, and Turkoglu simply was not going to get adequate minutes.
The biggest beef that I have with the deal is this: if it only took a couple of months to realize that Turkoglu was a mistake, why even make the trade in the first place? It never made sense to move a guy who could play the point in the event that Steve Nash got injured (Leandro Barbosa) for a guy to play a position that you have at least four other guys that can play it. The worst part of all of this is that the Suns had to move Jason Richardson to get rid of Hedo's horrible contract, and J-Rich has been one of the most consistent performers for them this season. It's a move that never should have had to happen, but judging by the wretched deal the Suns got rid of by shipping out Turkoglu, they could have done a lot worse.
The player I'm most interested to see coming back to Phoenix is Marcin Gortat. He's a guy that I've had my eye on ever since the speculation of trading Nash first surfaced, because I thought he'd be a great fit for the Suns. He should provide a spark down low, and he is at least a way more serviceable option than Robin Lopez.
The NBA is seeing former Suns Amar'e Stoudamire dominating in New York and is getting some early MVP consideration. How does this make you and Suns fans feel?
I feel like the Suns did everything that they could under less than ideal circumstances to keep Amar'e. They offered him plenty of contracts and big time money, but the fact that Steve Kerr left the team in a lurch during the off-season did not help things. I feel like Amar'e would be having similar offensive output in Phoenix, especially with Nash still feeding him the ball, but the reality is that he's gone, and the team is struggling without that inside presence to free up the outside shooters.
The one knock against Amar'e that Suns fans always bring up is that he has a tendency to take games off and not exactly give it his all on defense. Those are both valid concerns, but I have a feeling that now that he's the star of the show in New York that this trend will be less likely to express itself.
The one thing with Amar'e that no one seems to bring up is that his knee problems could eventually come back up. Micro-fracture surgery is always a serious thing to undergo, and even though he hasn't had any major issues with the knee since, there's always the probability that it will act up again. Phoenix's training staff has always had a good reputation for keeping guys healthy, so it will be interesting to see if Stoudemire can continue to stay healthy in the Big Apple.
Now on to the game tonight. How ironic is it to see the Spurs running more and scoring more and do you think this style of play will play right into the Suns' hands tonight in San Antonio?
It's certainly an interesting change of pace. The Spurs have generally been a team that can slow down a game to a crawl and dominate teams with solid perimeter and inside defense, but this year's incarnation of San Antonio has been completely the opposite. I've been extremely impressed with how well the team has been moving the ball (they're second in the NBA in assists per game), and they really seem to be clicking on all cylinders early, as opposed to previous seasons when they wait until the end of the year to really fire up the troops.
Whenever you are talking about a high-tempo game, it obviously helps Phoenix out. When the Spurs have had success in slowing Phoenix down (which seems to happen a lot, with the exception of the 2010 playoffs), then it takes the Suns out of their game, and the Spurs just pound the ball inside to Duncan with great success. Now, the Spurs are still certainly capable of playing solid defense (even though they are 13th in the league in points allowed per game), but Phoenix is still going to be thrilled if the game turns into a track meet. It honestly is their only chance at winning.
Nash is having another solid season and shows no signs of slowing down. Tony Parker is also having a solid season and had a tremendous showing against the Memphis Grizzlies with 36 points. Is this the key matchup tonight or is it something else?
Unfortunately for Phoenix, they're going to have to rely once again on Robin Lopez to try to stay with Duncan, and if Lopez gets into early foul trouble and only plays 12 minutes again in the re-match, the Suns are in big trouble. Stopping Duncan will be the key in my eyes, because if they can slow him down inside and force the game outside, the Suns have a much better chance of winning.
Recently suns.com had a villains list and it was dominated by current and former Spurs. Come on, so San Antonio pretty much owned the Suns over the past years and crushed any NBA title hopes the team had. Sure the Suns swept the Spurs last year but will the Suns ever let it go?
On the serious side though, I think there are quite a few fans that don't view San Antonio as Phoenix's biggest rival (myself included). It's probably a sign of respect that the Suns' website went to the effort to include so many Spurs players, because the team itself isn't really "hateable". The team is really one of those that fans don't like to see on the slate, but they respect them like crazy. The Spurs have won their titles and playoff series the right way: by building a team that is greater than the sum of its parts, and having a franchise center and brilliant head coach.
Phoenix is now starting a process to rebuild the team, and while they'll probably keep elements of their run-and-gun style, but they'll probably put a bigger emphasis on team defense. The Spurs have shown this season that you can have an up-tempo offense but still have guys who can play solid defense, and while it may sound like I'm trying to earn brownie points here, the Suns would be well-advised to study San Antonio's style this season. It doesn't require obtaining elite free agent talent, and with a younger team that will undoubtedly be fielded by Phoenix last year, it will be easier to build a team-first style squad now than it has been in the past with guys like Amar'e in the fold.
San Antonio Spurs' guard has been named the Western Conference Player of the Week along with Boston Celtics' Paul Pierce who won Eastern Conference Player of the Week.
Parker averaged 25.7 ppg and 8.7 apg including a monster scoring night against the Memphis Grizzlies with 37 points to help secure the overtime victory.
Congratulations Parker. Now if Manu Ginobili can get some recognition for his play of late.
Jeff and I are back for another episode of the Spurscast. To start this episode off, we reviewed the past week's games, which included some late game theatrics by Manu Ginobili. We also talked about what the Spurs had done well and what could be improved on.
Before discussing the topic of the week in the second half of the show, we read some of your comments about last week's topic. This week's topic was, "if Manu continues this level of play for the rest of the season, will he have a legitimate chance to win NBA MVP?"
Listen to our takes and get your takes in in the comments and we'll talk about them on the next show. Also, if two of our readers or commenters would like to debate this topic themselves, let us know in the comments and we'll set that up for later this week or next week.
Oh and if you want free tickets to a Spurs game, we here at Project Spurs are giving one lucky fan tickets to either the upcoming Denver Nuggets or Los Angeles Lakers game. Click here to find out how to win the tickets.
The Spurscast. The original San Antonio Spurs podcast.
Intro Music: "Headstrong" by Trapt.