ICYMI: The San Antonio Spurs completely dominated the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semi-Finals. Actually, when you consider the fact that the Spurs led the entire game, were up by as much as 43 points at one point, and finished with a 32-point margin of victory, it’s fair to say that the Spurs placed their nuts right on the faces of the Thunder and gave them a good ol’ fashion t-bagging.
I’ve been looking forward to this playoff matchup for about 6-months now. Everyone has known since basically the start of the season that the Western Conference standings would finish the 2015-2016 NBA Season featuring Golden State and San Antonio at the 1 and 2 spots. Which meant the Spurs would most likely be facing the OKC Thunder in the 2nd round of the postseason (if Durant and Russ managed to stay healthy all year, something they’ve been unable to accomplish the previous 3 seasons). The matchup has some legit history, as both teams have knocked each other out of the playoffs once over the past 5 years. Additionally, the matchup features a polar contrast between two types of teams: an iso-oriented team with 2 of the 5-7 best players in vs. arguably the most team-centric, unselfish, fast-playing teams in the modern era. That matchup also provides NBA junkies with a chance to watch one of the best defensive teams in the past decade matchup against 2 of the greatest offensive players in the past decade. I can spend the next 1,000 words explaining why I’ve been so jacked up for this series for so long… however, both you and I(?) have lives, which means this joint can’t go on all day.
The Thunder shit the bed and completely under-delivered last night in San Antonio. After salivating over this potential series for months, NBA fans got screwed for Game 1. Despite the blowout, fans did get to see some dominating and fantastic team play from the Spurs. Not only that, fans got to see a game that featured some interesting statistical tidbits and some NBA record breaking.
Here’s some fun facts surrounding the game:
Combined, Durant and Westbrook hit 11 of 34 for 30 points, while San Antonio’s duo of LaMarcus Aldridge and Leonard came together for 63 points on 28-of-36 shooting, including 2-of-3 from 3-point range. – Michael C. Wright
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the Thunder will be swept and out of the playoffs in 4 games if Durant and Russ continue to shoot as poorly as they did last night relative to Aldridge and Kawhi.
Oklahoma City played 20 possessions in which it didn’t make a single pass. San Antonio, conversely, put together a total of eight possessions in which they made five passes or more before even taking a shot. – ESPN Stats & Info
Ouch. That stat’s going to fucking hurt when someone brings it up during an OKC practice on Sunday in preparation of Monday’s Game 2.
Among Aldridge’s 18 buckets, 15 came on assists from teammates, and he didn’t miss any of his 15 attempts following a teammate’s pass, while knocking down 6 of 6 off Tony Parker dishes. – Wright
Damn. I’ve never been a huge fan of LaMarcus Aldridge’s game. It’s kinda prodding and Aldridge tends to be a bit of a ball-stopper. But holy shit. If Aldridge can score at anywhere near that level of efficiency, the Spurs may win the whole damn thing.
Aldridge scored 34 of his 38 points when defended by Oklahoma City’s starting frontcourt duo of Serge Ibaka and Steven Adams. – Wright
Aldridge racked up his 38 points in 29:32, which ranks as the most points in 30 or fewer minutes played in a playoff game in the shot-clock era. – Elias Sports Bureau
Ayyyo Adams and Ibaka need to step it the fuck up defensively in Game 2. Because it’s not like OKC can put any of it’s other big men on LaMarcus. If Aldridge is balling out like this on Adams and Ibaka, who happen to be above-average defenders, imagine the bitch he would make of Enes Kanter, arguably one of the worst defensive big-men statistically in the history of the NBA? Fruit cocktail, anyone?
Last night’s game marked the first time in the Popovich era that San Antonio led a postseason contest by 40 points or more. – Wright
Two Words: Gregg Popovich.
You know it boy.