GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT)

Moderators: BombsquadSammy, GREY 1769, Baphomet

User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#1 » by GREY 1769 » Sat Jan 9, 2021 6:43 pm

After two successful games in LA where we regrouped, refocused, and recharged we bring our team play to Minnesota for this first of a back-to-back to continue to build our bubble style and grow together.

WHERE: Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

WHEN: Saturday, January 9, 2021, 7pm (CT)

Earn The Stripes Mode: Resilient and rising!

Read on Twitter


GO SPURS GO!!!
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
ducler
Cold Hard Gameday Facts
Posts: 11,393
And1: 7,778
Joined: Jun 15, 2008
Location: France
Contact:
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#2 » by ducler » Sat Jan 9, 2021 11:52 pm

Read on Twitter
Image
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#3 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:23 am

We are generally too slow, settling for the 3 too much, and not responding on D properly - jumping on fakes to get blown by (DD), not rotating to the cutter for a dunk.
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#4 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:31 am

They are 5-5 from 3. Maybe get out there faster to contest harder?!
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#5 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 1:35 am

TAKE IT STRONG TO THE BASKET, JAKOB, YOU ARE THE BIGGEST PLAYER ON THE TEAM!!! TWO MISSED BUNNIES!!!
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#6 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 2:19 am

Read on Twitter


Better response defensively and on O driving more.

We left a lot of points on the floor with missed bunnies, with missed shots at the rim, with fast breaks that once again need some fundamentals refreshing.

We NEED to read, respond, and rotate way better than what we are right now. We can't rely on them getting cold. Get out there, get a hand in to contest, press them for rushed misses.

Box out better to preserve possessions.

Push our pace, pass more, and execute at the rim and the arc, Spurs!
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#7 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 2:21 am

Read on Twitter

Read on Twitter
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#8 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 4:17 am

We kept at it through the rough patches. Things finally clicked and we put together a solid stretch of play to earn the win!
Read on Twitter

Read on Twitter
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
Phreak50
Analyst
Posts: 3,244
And1: 5,025
Joined: Feb 01, 2014

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#9 » by Phreak50 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 10:20 am

Derozan is such a unique and gifted scorer. I really hope he gets a chance to play for a ring soon.

My favourite player to comment on, KJ looked more comfortable today. Almost playing within himself and not forcing as much as usual or charging like a bull on ice skates to the hoop. His three pointer absolutely brings rain from the clouds though!

I feel for TWolves fans, they've had some really good players over the years but their GM and coaching have let them down by not putting them in the right situations and building the right team.

Would be a shame to see someone as talented as KAT go to waste for more years to come.
User avatar
GREY 1769
Forum Mod - Spurs
Forum Mod - Spurs
Posts: 19,244
And1: 17,087
Joined: Mar 17, 2010
Location: Silver and Black; Blue and White
   

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#10 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 11:22 am

Well, it was more bobble than bubble play for many stretches in this game, but it felt like we got them all out of our system, our D to O kicked in, our passing kicked in, our shot making kicked in, and in a symbolic moment, we sealed the game on a defensive play that we chased for a lot of the game but did right at the end - covering the arc, deflecting the pass, and holding onto the deflection.

We started playing away from our energetic bubble style and instead settling for outside shots that we were not particularly efficient with, connecting just over 41FG% overall, though a decent 41% from 3 on 5-12. We were down by 28-20 when our energetic bench - they only play one way! - got us within two points on Patty's two quick 3s. But we ended the Q similarly to how we began it, on lacklustre defensive coverage from reading the plays poorly to reacting and rotating too slowly to some flat out lazy contesting.

Although they couldn't miss from the arc, we kept getting confounded and not getting out to contest - that's communication. But when we did get to the shooter, at times we didn't even have a hand up - that's inexcusable. We finished the 1st Q down by 6, which is some minor miracle given they were shooting something like 70% from the field and 6-6 from the 3. Two were end of clock heaves from way back so there's nothing you can do, but the others were nowhere near well enough contested. What helped close the gap was our pace as we made five 3s of our own and kept up with scoring inside. All this despite DeMar not putting up any shots, LMA 1-5, and DJ 1-4.

We came back from an eight point deficit to lead by two at the half, though we left a lot of points on the floor - missed bunnies, missed finishes at the rim because of midair indecisiveness, and some flat out bad reading of some of their set plays, like their end of 2nd Q cross court pass for a wide open left corner 3.

We flipped the script and won the 2nd Q 32-24 on the back of our defense doing some things better like running back better, collapsing in the key to prevent easy drives, covering their P&Rs better to force misses and moving faster and driving more on O. Whereas we made 3-4FTs in the 1st Q, we were a stellar 14-16FTs at the half. This helped to offset going only 1-4 from 3. DeMar woke up, and he along with Keldon, Rudy, and Patty carried the O while the rest struggled. Our movement off ball was faster, crisper, and more purposeful and this helped open up lanes for us to keep driving. We had only two TOs in the first half, and our transition defense also helped us get 19 points off of their 10 TOs. We found various ways to score and that we did is a tribute to our versatility and our defensive impact.

The third Q was a back and forth affair, but marked by an ending similar to that of the 2nd - they spread the floor and found the open man for a 3, this time from the right corner to cap a 10-0 run to spoil our good play and finish it with a two point lead.

The ongoing lead changes continued throughout the 4th Q, and because of largely self-inflicted play, we didn't really get solid, sustained runs going. But we stayed with it despite the errors. We did balance out the first half with two Patty 3s in the second half which helped shift momentum our way and wrest a one point lead from their push. We are managing to stay the course and push through these kinds of games better this season. DeMar scored our final nine points to tie up the game 113-113 in what was one lead change after another. A shift here was end of Q defensive play in which we didn't allow an open shot unlike at the end of the first three Qs. Keldon secured the rebound and we came into the first OT of the season with a momentum on both ends.

It seemed as if we got all our mistakes and butter finger misplays out of the way in regulation and something clicked in OT. We made 3s, we got O board putbacks, drove and got to the FT line, we made some pressure good to great passes to hit clutch shots and stay ahead: a DeMar drive to the baseline and kick out to DJ who smartly made the extra pass to Patty for a 3; a contested DeMar's last second recognition of Patty in the left corner who faked a 3 to get clear of a defender flying by, took a step in and nailed a left baseline J. The lone defensive miscue was giving up a quick 3 to the one guy who was hottest from the arc. He shouldn't have been allowed to get the pass but it was compounded by Keldon not contesting as well as he ought to have. Pop was livid. But we regrouped. Like at the end of the 4th Q, we made a quality defensive stop when we needed it most. We were up 3 so they passed up an open lane 2 to kick out for a chance at a 3 but we had covered all their shooters at the arc very well. LMA was watching the drive and kick and deflected the pass that Patty secured and dribbled out the clock.

We are about instilling and improving bubble style of play that caters to the youth strengths, but it was our vets who flat out won it for us tonight. LMA was the dominant force last game, and DeMar flat out put the team on his back in this one with the support of Patty and Rudy. DeMar led us with a team-high 38 points (13-23) basically in three Qs and OT because he hadn't taken a shot in the 1st Q. All of his points were within the width of the paint extended out to just below to top of the arc. He brought out the toolkit and kept going at them with an impressive array of moves: driving left and right and finishing with either hand; crafty finishes in the key highlighted by a behind the back dribble drive for an up and under reverse scoop basket and foul; an O board putback; team-leading 12-13FTs (and he got fouled on some others that he didn't get calls for); a thunderous dunk; top of key Js. All this plus he had 5 boards and 5 assists. A couple of times he finished too low at the rim but overall he adjusted to what wasn't working for him in the previous game and in this one was far better in getting the right height and angles so the ball bounced his way. Time and again he came through for us in a new style vintage performance.

LMA didn't score well but he defended well on a tough assignment against a talented C. He moved his feet to prevent open lanes and contested with verticality, boxed out well and skied to seal rebounds, got an O board putback (3 rebounds in total), and complemented a sparse 1-3 from 3 with his patented left block J. A complementary 10 points but with contributions across the board with an assist, 2 steals, and a block.

Dejounte continues to grow as a PG not only in efficiency and breadth of shot making, but in decision making and leadership. He is also becoming a triple threat of scoring with crafty drives, mid-range Js, and 3s. A 22-point, 7-18, 3-6 from 3, 5-6FT performance shows his stat stuffing when he O game is on, but he supported it with a team-high 14 rebounds (2 on O), 4 assists, 1 steal and 1 block. Pop commented after the game about the extra pass DJ made to Patty after catching that DeMar drive and kick. It may not sound like a big deal or something he should know to do by now, but as an O first PG coming into the league, it's the decisions like this to make the good-to-great pass that stand shoulder to shoulder with his O stats. Couple that with him directing the team where to move on the court and their response along with him talking to Keldon during a break in play about something we just ran and we have the makings of a guy coming into his own.

There were a couple of plays he made that'll likely end up in the film session. His telegraphed one-handed pass was easily stolen for an unforced TO. He was also covering their backup PG but backed off close coverage when the PG made a pass. Well that PG backed up behind the arc, quickly got the ball back and promptly passed it to their C at the top of the key for a basket. There's no such thing as a perfect game, and considering we only had six TOs all game it maybe comes across as too picky. But games are decided in the details, so in terms of improving, these two are manageable fixes that could reap rewards in the future.

Keldon bounced back well from his most forgettable shooting game and was active and disruptive throughout the game. A 17-point contribution came on 6-12, 2-5 from 3, and 3-4FTs. He co-led the team with 3 O boards (9 in total), none more impactful than that OT sky high grab of a DJ miss for a physical putback. He also had 4 assists and a steal, a strip on their drive just as they were going to put the ball up. Great recognition, great timing, and great staying with the play till the end. He is relentless! He made another sweet pass inside to LMA for a dunk, and when he drove he curled the ball into his to protect it before uncoiling to finish at the rim. His decisions show his inexperience at times, like when he had their backup PG on him and chose to pass rather than drive. He's such a sponge, though, that I expect the recognition to come soon enough.

They were part of four starters in double figures, all except for Lonnie. It's not all about scoring, of course, but about how and how not to contribute. He had a couple of steals, so good reads, anticipation, and reaction. But both times the finishes fell short. He had done a better job at bridling his wild athleticism, but at times like these you can see can't wait to burst out. Well in his enthusiasm he once again tried to do too much and finish with flair on the first one and changed his mind about how to finish mid-air so that two choices resulted in neither being full committed to and he didn't score. He reverts to these now and again, but luckily it doesn't happen as often as it used to. I can only imagine the film session about these, nevertheless. He was 2-8 overall, but just 1-4 in the restricted area. For a guy this athletic, this is surprising.

But off nights happen. He seemed to be one of two Spurs who had butter fingers in this game. Keldon's effort in diving to the floor to secure a steal was foiled by Lonnie's TO. Lonnie had an open 3 that he hesitated on and passed instead to DeMar who missed late in the clock. That was probably a better to not as good a pass decision. His D was lazy early and I don't like this pattern of making it look like he defended because he was there when he didn't do enough to stop the shot; a trot out to the arc without even putting a hand up - video session worthy for sure. He redeemed himself in the 4th Q when he fought over a screen to get back into the play and stay with their C preventing an easy path for a pass. He did make an in rhythm 3, and had 2 steals, but it was a night of missed opportunities.

The other butter fingers Spur was Jakob. We try to involve him but it's like the ball is a hot rock. Twice in a row he missed bunnies in the key with these not quite floater push shots when he could have taken one extra step and dunked. Pop was incredulous on the sideline. I don't know what it will take for it to sink into Jakob about his tentative finishing at the rim, but given he doesn't spread the floor, he bloody well better figure out the footwork and finishing fundamentals at the basket. Part of it is confidence, and it seems like with each miss he's even more anxious to just get rid of the ball. He as SIX points combined in the last three games. That's just not nearly good enough. He's not thinking his way through to making good decisions with the ball, and that's both in terms of his scoring and, today, his passing with those two wild passes that sailed over teammates for TOs.

It looks like it affects him on the D end as well. His effort on their end of 3rd Q shot didn't even include hands up to contest. He trotted out to a shooter just going through the motions in another instance in the 4th Q as well. To his credit, down low he moved his feet, remained straight up and got a steal so he is terrific in close quarters, but the more the game spreads, the more he gets stretched. He's reliable (or his height is) for solid rebounding each night (7 in total, 3 on O), but he's better than the output we see from him on O. Frankly at the point he shouldn't have to be reminded to finish strong at the rim, and to contest and close out with more effort -- hands up is a basic component. I hope he bounces back and is more consistently engaged in the game.

DeMar's bench counterpart was Patty who was a sniper with a bench-high 21 on 8-14 and 5-8 from 3. He was joined by Rudy who had a lean 9 points on 4-9, 1-3 from 3 to go along with 4 boards, 3 assists, and a block. I think his shot selection can at times be better, like when he takes and misses it without anyone else having touched it, but these are occurring less frequently. He did force a jump ball through his solid help D and getting his hands on the ball.

Devin didn't score tonight. It happens. He even got blocked on a dunk attempt - welcome to the NBA, rook! His 3s were too hard, clanking off the back of the rim, but I'm sure he'll make an adjustment. But his defense, and in particular skying for a key O board and smart pass out to get a second chance and score was a sign of good awareness and contributing even when his shot wasn't there. He had 2 O boards (4 in total), 3 assists, and a steal. I'd like to see him be more assertive with the ball and see how far his current handles can take him as well as get to the rim more. DeMar is an amazing vet to learn from in these respects so I hope Devin soaks up as much as he can in their time together.

Over the seasons, I've noticed a pattern of us starting slow when coming from a warmer west game to the cold of an opponent in the east. Hopefully with the rims now being more familiar we can connect on more of the chances we generate. That we had 101 of them in this game is a good sign, as are our 8 steals. We also had a 20-4 fast break advantage which is proving to be an important indicator for us:
Read on Twitter


I love that bubble style of play and vets coming up strong is blending so well.

We were blocked 7 times (not counting those by the rim - this game may have been close to a record in terms of missed dunks) so we need to find better ways of finishing. I liked that we used the high-low passes again, and that as the game progressed, we found a better rhythm in making good to great passes. There were several hockey assists by DeMar, Patty, DJ, LMA I believe, and for sure Jakob wherein they either sacrificed their shot for a better one by someone else or they recognized the open man opportunity quickly and wasted no time getting the ball to him.

There was a lot of fumbling about in this game. Not exactly a fundamentals clinic with our fast breaks either. But what I really like is that we have this spirit of focusing on the next play that is serving us well. Pop mentioned it in the post-game tonight, but it's stood out in all but one of our games this season. We just don't get down on ourselves and don't let the mistakes get to us collectively. This is important in a game we were clearly trying to win - over 40 minutes for three of the hottest starters and 30 for Patty for the first time this season - and keep our momentum going.

p.s. If we don't hear from DJ, this is why! :lol:
Spoiler:
Read on Twitter


Here's the full interview:
Spoiler:
Read on Twitter


NOTEWORTHY ACHIEVEMENTS
Read on Twitter

Read on Twitter

Read on Twitter

Read on Twitter
ImageImageImageImage
The Spurs Way
Thinking of you, Pop :hug:
User avatar
imagump1313
Veteran
Posts: 2,640
And1: 1,457
Joined: Apr 27, 2013
Location: Behind You
       

Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 9: SPURS AT WOLVES, 9-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#11 » by imagump1313 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 6:33 pm

Not going to be nearly as detailed as Grey but here is what I saw:

Minnesota is one of the few teams in the West that you can say we are better than right now. Just watching them is hard on the eyes.
They have a little talent with KAT and Russell. Both make poor decisions though and KAT still tends to float at times. Russell made some horrific shot selections and basically cost them that game. We got that win on talent alone(like I said, one of the few teams in the West that we can do that to) and DeRozan having a big game.

On our side:
I really like what Ive seen from Murray the last couple games. He still doesn't take ball security very seriously and some of decisions drive me insane but I appreciate the aggressiveness and trying to make a difference rather than the passiveness of watching the game happen.

Walker has been better also but still tends to disappear and makes many of the same mistakes Murray does. He has also been much more aggressive lately which only helps us even if he fails.

Johnson has been up and down, but even when he is down he makes a difference out there.

Vassell has been more down than up but I still think he has more upside once he gets comfortable. That blocked dunk attempt was still great aggressiveness, it happens in the NBA.

Patty Mills is FINALLY being used in the perfect role for him. Not too many minutes, coming off the bench where he can score and not be noticed soo much as a defensive liability. I'm glad he is embracing it.

DeRozan seems to finally be embracing this style of play and not forcing being the hero. That pass he made to Mills in the corner late in the game when he was about to force up a bad shot was great. He might be finally starting to realize he doesn't have to score to be helpful. His defensive effort has also been much better than Ive ever seen it.

I'm sad about Lyles playing his way out of the rotation. Its his own fault but also has much to do with other younger guys stepping up.

Our defensive effort has been good but still a concern. Minnesota missed soo many wide open shots and turned the ball over needlessly soo many times. They also take too many bad shots to count. They are just not a good team. We were lucky to win that game but at least we did. Last year that was a loss.

Return to San Antonio Spurs