Spurs need to refocus on defense
The Spurs got torched Wednesday night. The Nuggets lit them up for 115 points and shot over 50 percent from the field including a scorching 57 percent from behind the three point line. The Spurs need to get things shored up before tipoff tomorrow night in Portland.
The Spurs won the first meeting but lost the last game they played on February 1st. LaMarcus Aldridge scored a career high 40 points to lead the Blazers to a 99-86 victory. This game the Spurs are going to be without Tim Duncan so most likely Antonio McDyess and Tiago Splitter are going to defend Aldridge on Friday night.
Neither McDyess nor Splitter can hold Aldridge one on one in the post so look for him to draw double teams all night. That should leave spot up opportunities for guys like Wesley Matthews, Rudy Fernandez, Brandon Roy and Nicholas Batum.
This will also be the first time the Blazers will play the Spurs since they traded for Gerald Wallace. The last time the Spurs played Wallace he scored 7 points on 2-11 shooting. If the Spurs are forced to double team Aldridge look for Wallace to have an easy path to the Basket.
In order for the Spurs to avoid a repeat of the Denver Game they need to be super crisp on their defensive rotations. The Spurs will need a big night from Richard Jefferson, George Hill, and Gary Neal on the defensive end. If the Spurs can close out on shooters, and hold the Blazers bench players in check then they have a very good shot at coming away with a road win.