• With San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan out of action with an ankle injury, a few Spurs chime in on Duncan being out of action:
"Just his presence makes a difference on the floor," McDyess said. "If he's not out there, it seems like you lose confidence a little."
"Tim Duncan's a Hall of Famer, one of the best defensive big men who has played the game," rookie guard Gary Neal said. "And, of course, you can always throw it into him and get a big bucket. So, yeah, we missed him."
"Great teams are supposed to overcome that," Ginobili said. "We should be able to forget about T.D. and just play a better game." (hoopsworld.com)
• Dallas Mavericks' Tyson Chandler says the Mavericks received a wakeup call in their recent loss to the Spurs:
Before a couple of nights ago we were going into a stretch where we had been playing some bad basketball defensively and it went right into the San Antonio game. Sometimes it takes a wakeup call like that so you can say okay we can’t win that way and we have to get back to the things that we saw in training camp and that’s the way that we’re going to win. Even though they hurt sometimes when you take a loss it’s actually better for the team.” (sportsradiointerviews.com)
• Express News' Tim Griffin gives five takes on the recent loss to the Denver Nuggets:
The first game of the Without Tim Duncan Road Trip didn't turn out quite like the Spurs wanted. The Spurs wilted under withering pressure from Denver’s running game as they dropped a 115-112 defeat Wednesday night at the Pepsi Center. The loss was an aberration from most of the season for the Spurs.
• Currently, the New Orleans Hornets are sitting at the seventh spot in the Western Conference playoff race but with David West suffering a season-ending ACL injury, the Hornets could possibly fall to the eighth seed and face the Spurs in the first round:
West's injury came as a huge blow for the Hornets, who held the seventh seed in the Western Conference entering Friday's games. They were only one game ahead of No. 8 Memphis and three games ahead of the surging Houston Rockets with 10 games remaining. (wusa9.com)
Hit the jump to read about how you can win free tickets to the Spurs-Portland Trail Blazers game in San Antonio next week, a new episode of "Coach B," a D-League player patterns his game after Ginobili, and more.