Now That's More Like It
The Spurs got Tony Parker back last night and proceeded to crush the Wizards 106-84. They finally went with a respectable lineup of McDyess, Duncan, RJ, Bogans and Parker and limited the Wiz to 33% shooting. The difference in three-point shooting was particularly interesting as the Spurs hit 10-of-21 from downtown compared to 4-of-19 for the Wizards. It’s more interesting since the Spurs also allowed only 26 points in the paint. Believe it or not but a huge reason for this was none other than Theo Ratliff. That’s right, Ratliff seems to still be alive after all and played 22 minutes last night menacing any Wizard with the audacity to come near the rim. I for one, am relatively shocked. The Spurs took a 12-point lead into halftime and put the Wiz on their heels for good with a 22-8 run to start the third. This was particularly nice since Duncan played only 27 minutes last night and was able to sit out the 4th quarter and get some rest for a change. The Spurs outrebounded the Wizards 59-44 and had 32 assists compared to only 14 for Washington. The Spurs starters were a perfect 13-of-13 from the free throw line. Highlights below:
Spurs Relevant Stat Lines
Tim Duncan: 16 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists, 1 block. Timmy flirted with a triple-double and might’ve gotten it too had he not sat out the end of the game. Triple-doubles are nice, but it’s nicer to have a healthy Duncan for the playoffs.
Tony Parker: 17 points, 8 asssits, 6 rebounds, 1 steal, 1 block. Tony’s importance to the team has rarely been so evident. The Spurs had only eight turnovers last night thanks in part to him being back and running the offense much more smoothly.
Richard Jefferson: 15 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist. Not a bad night, especially since he only had one turnover.
Matt Bonner: 12 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block. Bonner has been a huge lift off the bench lately with his three-point shooting and rebounding. He was 3-of-4 from downtown and is showing a greater commitment to rebounding and defense than usual. Let’s hope he keeps it up.
Roger Mason: 11 points, 6 assists, 3 rebounds. Mason shot well for the second straight game and appears to be out of his slump. He made 3-of-5 from downtown and did a great job passing as well, dishing out six assists with no turnovers.
Theo Ratliff: 11 rebounds, 5 points, 3 blocks, 2 assists. He played 22 minutes and locked up the paint with his blocking, offensive rebounding (4 offensive boards), and overall intimidation.
Wizards Relevant Stat Lines
Gilbert Arenas: 18 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal. One of the only Wizards to show up, Agent Zero only managed to dish out 2 assists. I won’t hold that against him though, since most of the team couldn’t buy a bucket all night.
Antawn Jamison: 15 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals. The only other Wizard player to show up, Jamison has had 3 straight solid games since missing the first few weeks of the season with a shoulder injury.
Coyote Ugly: DeShawn Stevenson
10 minutes, 2 rebounds, zero points on 0-of-4 from the field. The Wizards lost Mike Miller after only 7 minutes and needed someone to step up. Randy Foye and Earl Boykins combined for 5-of-20 from the field (19 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists), but Stevenson was far and away the worst sub for the Wiz. It’s never a good sign for your career when you’re being outplayed by everyone on the team including Earl Boykins.