During the regular season, San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker at times played at a level that some would consider MVP-worthy. After cooling off for a while Parker appears to be back in rhythm, and his play will be the key to the Spurs getting past the Golden State Warriors in the second round.
Parker was near-unstoppable in the month of February for the Spurs, averaging 26.1 points, 8.3 assists and shooting .540 from the field for the month before suffering an ankle injury in early March. The 30-year old PG has been just as good in the playoffs, scoring 20 or more points in six of the Spurs seven games, including 32 points in a masterful performance against Golden State in game three, a Spurs victory.
When Parker is rolling offensively, everything else becomes easy for San Antonio. Parker’s penetration breaks down defenses as they have to converge to stop him from making a layup, leaving his teammates open for easy looks at the basket. If you take away his drive by playing off of him, Parker has developed into a consistent enough mid range shooter to make the defense pay.
Parker may not be shooting as high of a percentage as he did during the regular season but his 24.1 points and six assists on .482 from the field are still great numbers. An aggressive Parker is what the Spurs will need to counter the perimeter scoring that the Warriors get from their young back court of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.
If Parker can continue to score at a high level, the Spurs may be able to put away the Warriors and advance to the NBA Finals. Parker’s offensive dominance will be what leads them to that goal.