Undermanned Spurs clobbered by Blazers

This article is cross-posted at Spurs Basketball

Without their Big 3, the San Antonio Spurs (23-10) lacked the size and firepower to matchup against the Portland Trail Blazers (18-16).

Kawhi Leonard led the Spurs with 24 points and 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the season.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 21 points and the Blazers routed San Antonio 137-97 Tuesday night while the Spurs rested Tim Duncan and Tony Parker.

Jamal Crawford scored 20 points, shooting 5-of-7 on three-pointers, and had eight assists for the Blazers, who led by as many as 48 points and sat all of their starters for most of the fourth quarter.

Gerald Wallace and Nicolas Batum each had 19 points in the win.

Kawhi Leonard had 24 points, 10 rebounds, five steals and one block to lead San Antonio, which snapped an 11-game winning streak overall and an eight-game streak on the road.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said before the game that he was resting Parker and Duncan because the Spurs were playing three games in four nights.

“They’ve been going and going and going and if you don’t do it now I think you’re asking for trouble,” Popovich said.

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Hot shooting extends Spurs’ win streak to 11

This article is cross-posted at Spurs Basketball 

Playing without Tiago Splitter, Manu Ginobili and T.J. Ford, the undermanned San Antonio Spurs needed a spark to help them keep their winning streak going.

Matt Bonner's 20-points on 5-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc was key to the Spurs victory over the Jazz.

Behind 20 points and 11 rebounds from Al Jefferson and 16 points and 11 boards from Paul Millsap, the Utah Jazz did their best to halt the NBA’s hottest team.

They man-handled San Antonio on inside points 56-30 and 41-33 on rebounds.

But the Spurs won anyway, thanks to a 47.6 percent (10-of-21) shooting from behind the arc.

Matt Bonner made 5-of-6 three-pointers enroute to his 20 point performance, and Gary Neal added 14 points off the bench as the Spurs defeated the Utah Jazz 106-102 Monday night for their 11th consecutive victory.

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Spurs World back at blogging

I haven’t been blogging lately, especially during the months of November and December, I guess I took the holidays too far and enjoyed to the fullest.

Manu is unhappy knowing that he will spend an ample amount of time watching in the sidelines for the Spurs. (Photo via ESPN)

However, I’m glad that there are still followers and readers on this blog despite the lack of timely post on the site.

But now I believe things will get back to normal and hopefully I can write more often and communicate frequently with my fellow San Antonio Spurs fans.

Since my last post, a lot of things had happened with the Spurs. They opened the season with a nice pair of wins over the Memphis Grizzlies and the new-look Los Angeles Clippers, dropped a game against the gritty Houston Rockets, bounced back with a win over the Utah Jazz, loss another game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, but more notably will miss Manu Ginobili for at least two months because of a broken his fifth metacarpal that will require surgery.

Without Manu, the Spurs faces a tough task of making it to the playoffs.

The team must rally and put up a great team effort to be able to sustain and survive the 66 season games in 120 days without missing the post season for the first time in the Tim Duncan era.

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Spurs’ James Anderson find solace at Impact Basketball

In the tiny Impact Basketball gymnasium, where a collection of NBA players have gathered to while away the league’s labor impasse with organized pickup games, there were no replays, or video screens or any other trappings of a real live professional basketball game. (via Jeff McDonald, Express-News)

San Antonio Spurs' James Anderson spends his time at Impact Basketball to hone his skills during the NBA lockout.

There weren’t even enough fans — just a couple dozen on this particular Wednesday afternoon — to constitute a crowd.

“This isn’t the NBA,” says Joe Abunassar, the Las Vegas-based trainer who dreamed up what has come to be informally known as “The Lockout League.” “But this is as close as these players are going to get for now.”

As the NBA’s summer of discontent stretches toward fall, jobless players have found a haphazard basketball oasis at Abunassar’s facility a stone’s throw from the famed Las Vegas strip.

By the time the two-week Impact Competitive Basketball series ends Friday, organizers say at least 75 NBA players will have participated, many of them Abunassar clients. Included on that list are Spurs guard James Anderson and rookie small forward Kawhi Leonard, the 15th pick in the June draft.

“Any time you can get a lot of guys like this together and get some good run in, it’s helpful,” Anderson said.

For players, the draw of Abunassar’s event was simple: Unlike the various pro-am leagues around the country, the Lockout League is open only to NBA players.

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Spurs’ Leonard and Anderson, impressive on Impact basketball debut

The Impact League is underway, and two of  San Antonio Spurs’ promising young players James Anderson and Kawhi Leonard, played for Team A and did well.

H/T to Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld for the great info.

In their Impact League debut, Anderson had 19 points, four assists and three rebounds, while Leonard had 16 points, five rebounds and four assists.

The Spurs’ young guns played with former Spurs Melvin Ely who was equally impressive. Ely finished with 16 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and three blocks for Team A.

Spurs’ Anderson and Leonard to participate in “Lockout League”

Last month, there were reports that San Antonio Spurs’ James Anderson and Kawhi Leonard will play at the Impact league (also dubbed the “Lockout League”).

Now, Impact released its complete roster where more than 60 NBA players are on board to train and compete in games, which will be held in Las Vegas from September 12-23.

Among the notable NBA players that will participate in the summer league event includes Chauncey Billups, Tony Allen, Stephen Curry, Rashard Lewis, Cory Maggette, Kenyon Martin, Jermaine O’Neal, Zach Randolph and former Spurs Stephen Jackson, Roger Mason Jr., Melvin Ely and Larry Owens.

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Spurs’ Neal, Anderson and Leonard to play in various Summer League spectacles

With the NBA lockout still in full effect, more NBA players appears to be interested in participating in some summer league games. After the Goodman League defeated Drew League last weekend in Washington, they were soon being dubbed the best summer league in the US.

San Antonio Spurs' James Anderson is reported to be joining some NBA players at Impact Basketball.

However, many other regions that didn’t get a chance to compete disagreed with that sentiment and wanted their shot against Goodman’s finest. (via hoopsworld.com)

On August 30, one league will have that opportunity. The Melo League is located in Baltimore and has had many NBA players in their gym throughout the course of the summer. They’ve been one of the more competitive pro-am leagues in the nation over the last few years and want to see if their All-Stars can take down the group from D.C.

Entering this game, the Melo League is the likely favorite because they’ll have home court advantage in Baltimore and have a star-studded group that is sure to attract plenty of attention.

The Melo League will be represented by Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, Chris Paul, Josh Selby, San Antonio Spurs Gary Neal and Donte Greene.

The Goodman League will be represented by Kevin Durant, John Wall, Brandon Jennings, DeMarcus Cousins and Hugh “Baby Shaq” Jones.

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Franchise mode: Trade Parker, Splitter for Paul?

In this edition of ESPN’s 5-on-5 roundtable, the panel of writers were asked this question.

Spurs' Tony Parker and Tiago Splitter

Franchise mode: What’s the first big trade you would make?

Zach Harper of Daily Dime Live responded:

Paul to the Spurs for Parker. (See the deal)

I think I could trick the digital Hornets with a trade of Tony Parker, Tiago Splitter and James Anderson for Chris Paul.

It would allow me to run out a trio of Duncan, Ginobili and Paul for the next two years, and then give R.C. Buford and Gregg Popovich the pleasure and opportunity of building with CP3 as the centerpiece.

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Spurs expressed interest in Casspi, but how can they get him?

According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, the San Antonio Spurs and the New York Knicks are both interested in the services of new Cavalier Omri Casspi.

But Cavs told ’em they traded for Casspi with intent to keep him. GM Chris Grant says Cavs have liked Casspi since Kings drafted him in 2009.

Casspi was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the 23rd pick of the 2009 draft.

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Leonard focused despite impending lockout

With a lockout looming, San Antonio Spurs forward Matt Bonner, vice president of the NBA players association is still hopeful that they’ll might be able to work something out.

Leonard turned 20 on Wednesday but that doesn't stop him from going to the gym and try to improve his game.

On the other hand, Spurs first round draft pick Kawhi Leonard seems to be determined to improve over the summer regardless if a lockout takes place or not.

Spurs Nation’s Buck Harvey wrote this great piece about Leonard.

Leonard has been in San Antonio this week getting acquainted and getting in some work. But when the lockout begins Friday, as most expect it will, Leonard will have to find someplace else to go.

He won’t be able to talk to Spurs coaches. He won’t have access to the Spurs’ practice facility. He won’t play in a mini-camp or a summer league. He also might miss his first NBA training camp and even the first three or four months of his rookie season.

Congratulations on being a first-round draft pick — and see you when we see you.

Most NBA players will create a workout regimen in the vacuum, and many will have the best intentions. But some will do more, because that’s who they are, and Joe Abunassar has seen this firsthand.

He was once a student manager for Bob Knight at Indiana, and he worked his way to an assistant’s position at the University of Wyoming in the mid-1990s. Then, about the time he failed to sign a Denver schoolboy named Chauncey Billups, he realized he liked recruiting less than player development.

Among his first clients, coincidentally, was Billups. Through that relationship he built others; Kevin Garnett has worked with him before, as have Matt Bonner and James Anderson.

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