LA Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs: Game 1 Postgame Grades and Analysis

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LA Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs: Game 1 Postgame Grades and Analysis
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The Spurs shook off the rust and burned with playoff intensity.

The San Antonio Spurs kicked off their first-round series with the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday afternoon, and home-court advantage was in full force as the Spurs strolled to a 91-79 win.

Injury questions abounded for both teams, as Tony Parker has dealt with a sore neck and Manu Ginobili has been slowed by a balky hamstring, among other ailments.

For L.A., Steve Nash has been sidelined by a sore hammy of his own, but all three stars managed to play in Game 1, though with varying degrees of success.

The Spurs' Big Three came up huge, as Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker scored 18 points apiece. Tim Duncan finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds. The shooting display was forgettable as they went a combined 20-of-49 from the field, but the Lakers couldn't find enough to take advantage.

Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol combined for 36 points and 31 rebounds, but it wasn't enough to get past the Spurs.

Los Angeles scored the game's first bucket, but the Spurs went up 4-2 and never relinquished the lead. San Antonio ended the first quarter up by nine. Tthey maintained that lead and headed into the locker room up 45-37 at halftime.

Both teams shot just 42 percent through two quarters, but the Spurs attempted seven more field goals than L.A. 

The Lakers got within four points in the third quarter, but San Antonio closed the frame on an 8-2 run over the final 90 seconds. All eight points were scored by the supposedly hobbled Ginobili, and the lead ballooned to 13 heading into the fourth. 

The Lake Show never challenged San Antonio in the fourth, as the Spurs cruised to victory and sent their fans home smiling.

Turnovers crippled the Lakers, as they coughed the ball up 18 times, twice as often as Gregg Popovich's squad. They also shot just 3-of-15 from three-point range and couldn't sustain any momentum.

Mike D'Antoni will have to find a way for his team to score more than 79 points, but the Spurs are also unlikely to shoot 37.6 percent from the field for the entire series.

Now let's take out our red pen and hand out grades for Game 1.

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