Wolves at Spurs
7:30 pm CST
A few days after getting taken apart by one of the best teams in the league, the Wolves get to play the Spurs again, this time in San Antonio.
The first meeting revealed the wide gulf in experience and talent between these two squads, as the Spurs guarded the rim relentlessly, shutting down the Wolves' attempts to get anything going in the paint (the Wolves finished with 24 points in the paint, but only 12 through three quarters, which is incredible), moved the ball with their usual aplomb, and demonstrated to the young Wolves what winning NBA basketball looks like.
Not much more need be said about the Spurs, who, despite a loss on Christmas day to the Rockets, remain among the top teams in the league, with experience, depth, terrific coaching, and a new star in Kawhi Leonard, the do-everything wing player who has emerged as the Spurs best player on both ends of the floor.
Hopefully the Wolves can make this one more competitive. The lessons of the last meeting should still be fresh in mind, but whether they are capable of doing anything too differently remains to be seen. Simply asking Andrew Wiggins to drive into the Spurs defense is not an answer; the Wolves woeful ball movement really came into focus in that first Spurs match up.
The Wolves were beaten in nearly every phase, their usual shooting woes exacerbated by the Spurs league best defense. The three point line hurt them as it often does, as the Wolves went 3-10 and the Spurs 10-24 behind the arc. The Wolves were also badly out-rebounded by a team that doesn't usually emphasize offensive rebounding. The Wolves made it far too easy for the Spurs to get second chances, something that simply has got to improve.
Regardless of the outcome, hopefully the Wolves will learn from whatever lesson the Spurs choose to impart. And hopefully they can keep this one a little closer.
LATE NOTE: No Tim Duncan tonight. Not sure who starts in his place.
Tim Duncan Boris Diaw?
Our blogging buddies are over at Pounding The Rock. Be excellent.
No no and no.