In his first two games of the season, Anthony Davis was averaging a gaudy 47.5 points, 16.5 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and freaking 4.5 steals plus 3 blocks, while heading into last night’s road challenge against the San Antonio Spurs.

Well, after last night, that’s going to take a good crash.

I mean, of course we knew Anthony was going to come right down to earth sooner than later, and with the Spurs’ front-court length, there wasn’t just wasn’t much room for the Brow to have another beastly performance. In this fourth episode of “The Hoops Saga” I gave a very close look at how they were able to do it.

 

FIRST HALF.

Well, first. Gregg Popovich decided to play it smart and give Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili a good ol’ DNP-POP. The Spurs will be playing the Miami Heat today which will conclude the team’s first back-to-back. He’ll definitely need his older guards with fresh legs to compete against a back-court of such quickness as of Goran Dragic and Dion Waiters.

But yeah, the opening quarter was pretty tight defensively. But unsurprisingly, three-time Defeinsive Player of The Year Kawhi Leonard was the first to came down to earth in the first half. He shot just 1-5 from the field, but it wasn’t really him who began the game as the focal point of the offense. It was Lamarcus Aldridge.

As I’ve drawn heat from this earlier in the past, I’d just rather have Lamarcus on my team, if we’re talking the best Power Forwards in our league. If I’m talking about a player that really defines his game and is truly a go-to threat from both inside-and-out, he’s it. Many say it’s unfair to Davis because he’s not near his prime yet, but that only answered my point.  I feel that Lamarcus is still the most naturally-skilled, and definitely has one of the highest basketball IQ’s in our league. Flame on, guys. I’d love to hear your thoughts down below.

But Aldridge wasn’t the only offensive threat in the early going, there was also, of course, new Spurs acquisition Pau Gasol:

But as the mid-way point of the opening quarter rolled on, as the Spurs were tied 12-12 with about 5:57 remaining. And as the Davis/Aldridge match-up continued, they really went at it defensively, causing both to struggle from the field in this game. They really just played each other very well. The reserves for San Antonio once again provided a huge lift, and nd I’m sure you can guess who led that charge. That’s right. Jonathon Simmons. And this was one of his many highlights from the game:

Then this happened:

Simmons finished the game with 11 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, and 1 block in 26 minutes of action.

I’ve said this over and over and over again about Jonathon Simmons. Not only is he a Point Guard, but he’s a game-changer and a match-up nightmare. There’s no other guard in this league who will come off the bench and give this kind of sufficient energy on both ends.

The Spurs later on jumped out to an 11-point advantage over the Pelicans, but thankfully enough they have this tremendous superstar that they can just go to, in order to bring them back. Sheesh.

Davis finished the half strong, though. He gave in 14 on 5-9, with 4 rebounds, 2 blocks and a plus/minus of -7. As for Aldridge, 10 points on 4-12, 4 rebounds, and one block.

But if there was one player who really gave San Antonio that provided punch in this game, was Patty Mills.

Mills finished with some red-hot shooting. In 24 minutes, he never disappointed, with 18 points (6-9 FG, 4-7 three-point) and 5 assists. He really just kept finding ways to get open, and the Spurs didn’t have a hard time finding him. But he had a very Patty Mills-like way to end the half, with an awesome buzzer-beating three-pointer to end the half.

 

SECOND HALF.

Kawhi opened the second half with a three, in hopes to shake off his 1-5 first-half, but this is a rising superstar we’re talking about here. Not someone who’ll disappear and not look for his shots the rest of the game.

And you know, it just…

Kawhi finished the game with a still-efficient 20 points on 6-12 shooting. And the Spurs just kept on cruising in the half. Blowing it up to an 83-60 lead to end the third. But if you turned off the TV before the fourth, you missed one heck of a treat.

The Spurs’ findings of young talent just continue to get better… and better… AND BETTER. Latvian big-man Davis Bertans made an immediate impact as soon as he let go of a falling-away three to beat the shot-clock.

The Spurs ended up taking the game in a good ol’ ***-whooping fashion, defeating the Pelicans 98-79. I think one thing we’ve learned from this game is that both Anthony Davis and Kawhi Leonard are still humans. I’m excited to see both compete in the MVP race this year.

 

FINAL TAKEAWAYS:

  • Anthony Davis slows down with 18 points and 5 rebounds.
  • San Antonio kills New Orleans in assists, 21-14.
  • Pau Gasol with 9 points, 8 rebounds, and 5 assists.
  • E’Twaun Moore finished with 18 points on 8-13 shooting.
  • Pelicans’ 5th overall draft pick Buddy Hield finished with 8 points and 5 rebounds in 17:39 minutes of action.
  • Tim Frazier logged 25 minutes with 7 assists.
  • Nicolas Laprovittola with 7 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists
  • David Lee with 6 points and 5 rebounds.
  • Dewayne Dedmon with 5 points, 6 rebounds, 1 steal, and 2 blocks.

 

The Spurs are now 3-0 to start the season, picking up wins against Golden State, Sacramento, and now New Orleans. Their next possible victim will be the Miami Heat, who have switched to full-rebuild mode in dawn of the Dwyane Wade-Era. Should be a good one.

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  1. Noble Domiano

    Excellent read, I just passed this onto a friend who was doing some research on that. And he just bought me lunch as I found it for him smile Therefore let me rephrase that: Thanks for lunch!

    Reply

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