The San Antonio Spurs have become a group of familiar faces in the NBA Playoffs. Arguably the most consistent squad over the past decade, it’s beginning to look like age is catching up with coach Gregg Popovich’s team.
One thing we’ve learned is to never count out this group led by Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili. If San Antonio is looking to make another championship run, they’re going to have to find a way past the youthful and high-scoring attack of the Golden State Warriors.
The series is currently tied one game apiece and headed to Oakland. The Spurs are benefactors of one of the wildest NBA comebacks in recent memory, and would stand to be shut out in this series if not for their heroics. The Warriors have dominated the early part of both games, forcing San Antonio to fight an uphill battle to the finish. The Spurs must get off to a hot start and put early pressure on the inexperienced Warriors.
San Antonio rallied back from 16 points in the waning minutes of Game 1, and dug themselves into a 19-point halftime deficit in Game 2.
The biggest advantage the Spurs have over Golden State in this postseason series is experience. Their core group has won NBA championships and been a regular playoff staple for well over a decade.
If San Antonio is looking to make a push, they have to force the young Warriors out of their comfort zone. They can make this happen by getting off to a great start in Game 3 and not allowing Golden State the comforts of playing with a sizable early lead.
Look for the Spurs to come out with energy and play with more intensity early. The veteran leadership knows that this series is not far from getting out of hand, and will recognize the importance of the first half Friday night.
If Golden State is allowed to jump out to a quick start in Oakland, the home crowd will grow raucous, making San Antonio’s late-game heroics much less likely.