NBA Playoffs 2012: San Antonio's Bench Will Push Spurs to NBA Finals

Justin WeltonAnalyst IIMay 27, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 20:  Tiago Splitter #22 of the San Antonio Spurs goes up for a shot against Reggie Evans #30 of the Los Angeles Clippers in the second quarter in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 20, 2011 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

San Antonio and Oklahoma City are about even across the board aside from one area. It's a crucial area, too.

Bench play.

Depth will be the overall factor why San Antonio will win this series in seven games.

Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant and James Harden. Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili.

Each team's Big Three provides maximum production from a variety of angles. Parker, Duncan, Westbrook and Durant get it done in the starting lineup, and Ginobili and Harden are the fire-starters off the bench.

However, Ginobili isn't the only guy off the bench capable of playing big-time minutes for San Antonio, they have a host of others who are ready to shine when they receive playing time.

SAN ANTONIO, TX - MAY 02:  Stephen Jackson #3 of the San Antonio Spurs celebrates a three point shot against the Utah Jazz during Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center on May 2, 2012 in San Antonio, Texas
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Oklahoma City doesn't have that option.

Do you know who started more games than any Spurs player this season? DeJuan Blair with 62.

Blair can barely get onto the court this postseason. He's averaging 8.2 minutes per game. He's went from an everyday starter, to a guy who sits at the end of the bench.


Matt Bonner, Tiago Splitter, Stephen Jackson, Gary Neal, Daniel Green and, of course, Ginobili could make up a starting five that could win more games than a number of NBA teams this season.

San Antonio's bench has speed, outside shooting, slashing, defense, rebounding and they have bought into the system.

It is one of the best benches in recent NBA history.

Oklahoma City has the talent to defeat San Antonio, but I just can't see it happening due to the Spurs bench.



Home teams in Game 7 are lights-out in the NBA playoffs. San Antonio will ride a great performance from its bench in a hostile environment to advance to the NBA Finals.