The Spurs beat the Pelicans 112-93, and while it was another solid team effort shooting wise they wouldn’t have done it without a strong performance from a bench that actually outscored the starting lineup.
This situation is quickly becoming a trend, but it goes to show that the Spurs definitively have the best second unit in the NBA.
Yesterday Manu Ginobili led all Spurs with 16 points, and Marco Belinelli added 14 points for a bench that totaled an impressive 65 points. The likes of Boris Diaw and Patty Mills have been contributing on a steady basis, Cory Joseph continues to improve and role players like Matt Bonner and Jeff Ayres have been quite solid in the start of the year.
The two main players of the second unit, however, are Ginobili and Belinelli. The two guards could easily start for any other team in the league, and that shows how deep and talented the Spurs roster is. The Italian has adjusted perfectly to the offense implemented by Gregg Popovich and the Argentinean has been as sharp as possible in recent years. If he keeps producing like this he could even contend for a Sixth Man of the Year award later in the season.
The play of Tony Parker and the solidness of the starters is clearly the main reason why the Spurs are currently one of the best teams in the NBA right now. But it’s clear they wouldn’t have this record if it wasn’t for their bench that is clearly establishing a difference just like last season.