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By Michael Erler on December 2, 2006.

Game 16 @ Utah, Jazz 83, Spurs 75

I don’t know about y’all, but I could hear that gynormous sucking sound at Utah all the way from my apartment in San Diego. And for once, it wasn’t the self-esteemless Ho-bags on
Big Love.

Okay, so the fourth girl isn’t technically one of the Ho-bags. She’s Amanda Seyfried and she plays the oldest daughter on the show. I just included her because she is SMOKIN’. Also, I think the big secret in Season 2 will be that she’s a lesbian. Just a hunch. You heard it here first. Still, the best character by far on the show is Ho-Bag # 2, Nikki (Chloe Sevigny). She’s awesome.

Why was I talking about a bunch of fictional polygamist Mormons again?



Oh. Right.

Cos, the Spurs are BORING.

Watching them play last Wednesday, I couldn’t help but feel something was missing. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but something was just off.

So let’s run down the checklist, and figure it together.

1) Tim Duncan’s bankshot. Check. He made a couple.
2) Oberto getting schooled by a decent NBA center. Check.
3) Tony missing jumpers, making garbage time lay-ups. Check and check.
4) Pop not playing Francisco Elson enough. Check.
5) Beno putting up more shots than the rest of the bench combined. Check.
6) Robert Horry stealing money. Check.
7) Findog playing like total ass. CHECK.

So have you figured it out yet? Here’s a hint….

You know that song that goes something like, “You don’t know what you’ve got til’ it’s gone?” Well that’s where the Spurs are right now, sans Manu. The only guy who can penetrate is Tony and more and more people are starting to go under the screens and sag back on him. That jumper of his that was so money for the first five, six games of the year is all but a distant memory now as once again, he’s clanking almost everything outside of 10 feet.

Not that I’m blaming Tony for this mess. He is what he is. It’s just that right now him and Tim are getting no help whatsoever from a third banana. The Jazz did the best job anyone’s done all season of not leaving Brent no matter what, so he was mostly a non-factor. And both Fin and RoHo failed to pick up the slack, shooting a combined 2 of 13.

Horry in particular hurt us at both ends of the floor as Carlos Boozer humiliated him repeatedly down low whenever the two were matched up. Beno chipped in with 11, but it took him 11 shots to get there, and that’s no way to give John Hollinger a boner.

Yeah, yeah, smart guy, I know Bruce Bowen had 17. It was still wasted though. If he’s getting 12 shots, something is drastically wrong with the offense. What is he doing playing 40 minutes a night at 35 years old? Getting lit up by the likes of Obi-Wan Kenobi, that’s what. The offense is stagnant, lifeless. They went to the line a measly 14 times, and were outrebounded 50-34 overall, and 16 to 7 on the offensive end. Being tired isn’t an excuse, it wasn’t even a back-to-back.

This is the second game in a row now where we’ve relied on Tim to initiate the offense so much that he’s exhausted by the fourth quarter. He can’t post up every single time. Even he needs to be just a catch and shoot guy now and then. And Oberto isn’t going to get it done against legit centers, okay? He looks great against small teams, but throw some size and skill and rebounding desire at him, and it’s not gonna happen. He’s had three games now against West centers who can play: Yao, Biedrins, and Okur, and for those three games he’s been a D-minus minus. In 62 combined minutes Bowen and Fab-O had two rebounds.

I’m aware a lot of what ails us could be solved simply if Finley and Horry could hit some shots. But how many games are we going to wait for that to happen? Barry isn’t nearly as effective without proper floor spacing and the threat of multiple drive and kick guys. We need some youth. We need some energy.

We need James “Flight” White.

He can, I’m guessing, take it to the cup. Most dunk champions can, right? Or is this like a gross generalization? He can give Bruce and Fin a break. He can give Bones some room to get his shot off. Maybe he can even stick his nose in there and use his pogo legs to grab the occasional rebound.

Besides that what else can we do?

1) Play Elson more. He’s got a bit more size than Oberto and can grab more rebounds and block more shots than Oberto can. Besides, not having his countryman on the floor with him seems to be affecting Oberto’s game. Tony isn’t getting him involved.

2) Play Bonner more. At this point I’m desperate enough to try anything. I’m sick and tired of watching Horry take fadeaway 3s with ten seconds left on the shot clock. Five shots vs. the Jazz and four were threes? What a big hairy girl. He should’ve retired already.

3) Give Butler another shot. Yeah, he was pretty awful the one game he played, but maybe his size can give other teams trouble down low. He should be able to score. It’s not like he’ll be doubleteamed with Tim out there. Remember, in his 12 minutes vs. the Heat, Tim was on the bench.

Eh, screw it. This is frustrating. I can’t write anymore about this tonight.

Your 3 Stars (But not really)

3) Brent Barry – It’s not his fault he was covered like glue. At least he found a way to contribute with five assists and didn’t force anything. He misses El Contusión more than anyone.

2) Bruce Bowen – He wasn’t even any good defensively and helped us get creamed on the boards. But there are like literally no other candidates here. We played awful.

1) Tim Duncan – 21-10-4-3, and completely ran out of gas midway through the 3rd. If he were KG he’d be like punching Bonner in the face in practice right about now, just because he can. Thankfully, he’s not an overrated loser like KG. Yeah, I said it.

Record: 11-5 Streak: L-2
Up Next: Vs. Sacramento Kings

The Good News is that the Spurs should be fully rested, not having played since Wednesday and having had a practice session to possibly resolve some of their issues. The bad news is that Manu is still out and I don’t like this match-up at all. I su
ppose the fact that the Kings played last night will help a little bit, but I have a feeling that Kevin Martin is gonna hurt us tonight. I’ll be pleasantly surprised if we come away with a W.

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  1. Dingo December 4, 2006

    Man, you threw me with the Big Love reference. I’ll admit that I watch the show, too, if you’ll admit that Chloe Sevigny is lucky to get any work after her potentially career-ending role in Vincent Gallo’s “Brown Bunny”.

    OK, we need Manu back in a bad way. And yes, Horry should retire aleady. But play Bonner and Butler more?! I’ll have to see it to believe it.

    One of the things I enjoy most about this time of the year is that some Spurs fan (no, I don’t mean you) start to lose faith in the team because Pop is busy tweaking lineups and rotations, and managing injuries.

  2. Michael December 4, 2006

    I wonder what the deleted comment was.


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