Matt Bonner Dunks, Creates Irreconcilable Paradox, Destroys Existence
We were due for a good revenge game. A game when a scorned player sticks it to his former team, making them regret ever letting him go. Matt Bonner went all Brett Favre on the Raptors’ asses last night, raining 3s and even exploding for a monster dunk.
The other story from the game was one Mr. Emmanuel Ginobili. Oh my. Talk about a return to form. His final stat line was a ridiculous 36-4-8 with 4 blocks and a steal to boot, finishing a team high +21, all in 32 minutes. And that doesn’t even really tell the story of last night’s game. Ginobili completely owned the game and willed the Spurs to victory. He probably left at least 5 to 8 assists on the floor from missed field goals or fouls. He came up with two gigantic blocks in the endgame. He ran the offense and sparked the defense, and refused to lose. He was the Manu of old, the great player that all Spurs fans openly love and pine for, the magician that has made him the most popular player in San Antonio over the last 5 years.
Oftentimes it can be beneficial for teams to play without their best players. It forces everyone to play harder and to trust in themselves and their teammates more. They must play aggressively and selflessly. In the case of the Spurs, I think it will also help speed up the learning curve, both in understanding the system and in developing chemistry. Initiation by fire, if you will. The offense looked especially good last night. We were being aggressive, we were passing, and we were competing and playing for each other.
There’s not much need to talk about last night’s “defense”. Sometimes you get caught up in that type of game, when every shot is falling, and both offenses are just clicking. The important thing to take away from last night’s game isn’t that we gave up 124 points; it’s that we scored 131. We don’t want to make a habit of giving up that many points, but at least we know that we have the offense for these types of games now. Also, with the game in the balance, we tightened the screws just a little bit, and played better defense down the stretch, allowing us to close the game out for the win.
We play the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday. If there’s a team I dislike more in the NBA, I’m not sure who it is. I want to crush them. Unfortunately, regardless of whatever extenuating circumstances may occur, they always play us tough. So we should be prepared for a tight, ugly game. I’m not sure if Duncan or Parker will be playing, but I’m not really too concerned about that. To be honest, I wouldn’t be upset to see the team battle without them again.
Pay attention to the rotation and who continues to earn big minutes and important minutes. Pay attention to who guards Nowitzki. He always seems to give us fits, and is a very tough cover for us. We’ve had success with Bowen on him in the past. Will Bogans play on him? McDyess?
We’re in the midst of a giant homestand. Over at Project Spurs, they’ve talked about the importance of coming out of the first half of the season with a good record. I touched on that a bit in my season preview. So while Wednesday night’s game is not must-win by any means, it would be nice to get the W, to get above .500, to try to start gaining a little momentum, and kick those Mavs asses.
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