The 21-9 Spurs took the court in LA early Saturday at 2:30 (CST) to take on the 19-9 Clippers (yawn). I thought they might be half-asleep for this one, and I was right. Clips had 8 and almost 4 minutes went by before we scored. Griffin was doing whatever he wanted, and "hello, Randy Foye can shoot!" A late Gary Neal three made it seem better than it was after 1 Q: 26-15.
So we tighten-up the D, and Tony & Timmy begin to get their heads out of lala land (both scoreless so far), and we'd close to within 5. Then along with Danny Green, they'd combine for 9 in the last 2-minutes of the half to actually take the lead, 45-43, completing a 21-14 run over 6 minutes.
Blake Griffin tied it up quickly out of the gates, and then it became a scoring fest - for SA. The next 4 minutes we would run the score from 45-45 to 65-50 with four threes (Bonner, Green, RJ, Green), and 8 points from Tony! But Foye again reminded us he can shoot, and just as quick as we got it...
Image Source (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
we lost it. Up 65-50 at the 7:20 mark, the Clippers went on a 17-0 run! Gary Neal hit a three & 2 FTs, and then our second timely defensive shot-clock violation closed-out the 3rd Q 70-67. Wow.
Neal began the 4th with another three, and a steal, followed by two DeJuan Blair buckets, and a TP FT, and our lead was suddenly 7, 78-71. Contained very well throughout for the most part by Tony, Chris Paul started to come to life. We missed a few shots, and CP3, Griffin, and Butler brought the Clips back to take the lead 81-80.
Then Tony makes a layup -- but then Butler sinks a FT on a 4-pt. play. (Down 3 85-82.) With 4:50 left, the common theme has been Tony & Timmy. 3 from Timmy and 4 from Tony, and we led 89-85. With 1:55 on the clock, Paul draws the foul on Green, and sinks both FTs (89-87). Tony does the same but only sink one (90-87). Then Chris Paul would make two straight layups, with a TP turnover in between (91-90 LAC). With :32 left Tony would draw a foul on Griffin, and sink both FTs (92-91).
CP3 sank 2 FTs with :29 left, and then two straight butterfinger possessions on our part, with two more CP3 FTs in between, and we're DONE. 95-92, Clippers' ball, 6 seconds left. Gomes threw the in-bounds pass to Paul, who was running backwards very close to the mid-court line. Upon his catch, and fearing a back-court violation, he threw a desperate pass horizontally across the court - directly to
none other than Gary Neal. Neal took a dribble, and knowing we were down-3, shot the top-of-the-key three, and it was MONEY! As happy as I was, he's got ice-water in his veins, and he's done this many times before. Incredible!
So Chris Paul misses the attempt at the buzzer, and it's OVERTIME! 95-95
In OT we'd miss 5 straight shots, and two Tim Duncan FTs. Paul would make two FTs, and with 2 minutes left, Clippers led 97-95. Bonner then hit a tight three to give us the lead 98-97, before Griffin tied it up 98-98 with 1-of-2 FTs with :42 left in OT. Spurs draw up the play that goes into Timmy, who knows Neal is gonna be open in the corner for the three.. the pass.. the shot, and of course, Gary Neal sinks it!!! Yeah baby! So CLUTCH it's unbelievable, he is.. 101-98. CP3 misses his floater on the next trip down, and that was it. Two more TP FTs (103-98), a meaningless Griffin dunk (103-100), and another foul. Then Gary Neal would miss BOTH FTs giving LA one more offensive trip with 7 seconds. Paul would take it upon himself to create it, but missed the final shot. We actually stole this WIN here 103-100 in OT.
SPURS: 6 players in double figures yet again..
23 assists on 40 FGs (.575) - pretty good, and only 9 TOs
Tony Parker -- 30 pts. -- 3 rbs. -- 10 asst. 11-22 FGs, 8-11 FTs
Tim Duncan -- 11 pts. -- 17 rbs. -- 3 asst. -- 2 blk.
Gary Neal -- 17 pts. -- 3 rbs. -- 3 stl. 5-8 3FGs
Blake Griffin -- 20 pts. -- 22 rbs.
Chris Paul -- 21 pts. -- 6 asst. 6-19 FGs
Randy Foye -- 21 pts. -- 8-17 FGs