|Jameer Nelson||PG||Tony Parker|
|Maurice Evans||SG||Michael Finley|
|Hedo Turkoglu||SF||Bruce Bowen|
|Rashard Lewis||PF||Fabricio Oberto|
|Dwight Howard||C||Tim Duncan|
|21 Nov 2007: Spurs 128, Magic 110|
The last time we played the Spurs, they pretty much killed us. How great were they? Well, we shot 56% from the field, hit 10 threes, and turned the ball over only 11 times... and we still lost by 18. The Spurs had just 3 turnovers, the Tim Duncan/Manu Ginobili/Tony Parker trio combined for 79 points on 30-of-56 shooting, and the team kept us off the offensive glass.
The biggest key for a victory tonight is containing Ginobili and Parker, which is easier said than done. Unless our point guards ate a metric ton of Wheaties this morning, they're not going to stop those two from getting into the lane, meaning Dwight Howard will need to protect the rim. He's about due, as he hasn't reached the three-block mark in a single game since March 15th vs. Indiana.
Interesting sideplot to watch: how Spurs backup center Kurt Thomas fares in black-and-silver. I was pissed when the Magic weren't able to acquire him from the SuperSonics at the trade deadline, but Seattle GM Sam Presti, who cut his teeth in the Spurs' organization, seemed determined to send Thomas to his pals in San Antonio. Recall the Spurs shipped Brent Barry and Francisco Elson to Seattle for Thomas. The SuperSonics cut Barry, who then waited the mandatory thirty-day period to re-sign with the Spurs. You'll have a hard time convincing me -- or any reasonable NBA observer -- that the Barry waiving wasn't pre-meditated. Whatever. Barry's return will not drastically alter the crazy Western Conference landscape. He's not that good anymore, but that didn't stop him from going nuts on us last time out. Ugh.
Tipoff's at 7 on FSN Florida, which sucks, because I know a lot of us are eager to see how we play against the defending World Champions. But it's not all bad: tonight's game is the last one televised on FSN for the rest of the season, meaning most Orlando residents won't have any trouble seeing the remaining 10 games of 07/08.
Check out Pounding the Rock for more on the Spurs.