San Antonio Spurs Playoff Schedule: TV Info and Predictions for Second Round

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San Antonio Spurs Playoff Schedule: TV Info and Predictions for Second Round
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

If you feel like the San Antonio Spurs haven't played a basketball game since the Reagan administration, your feeling isn't that far off. 

Gregg Popovich's squad swept the Lakers in embarrassing fashion—four double-digit wins by an average of 18.75 points—in the first round of the NBA playoffs, giving them a week (eight days in between games, to be exact) to rest before taking on the sixth-seeded Golden State Warriors.

Will the extended time off result in rust, giving Stephen Curry and the Warriors the advantage they need to pull off their second upset of the postseason?

Or does it simply mean the veteran Spurs will be well-rested and prepared to run with Mark Jackson's fast-paced team?

Let's take a look. 

 

Spurs Second-Round Schedule (via ESPN)

Game

Date

Time (ET)

Where

Watch

1

Monday, May 6

9:30 p.m.

AT&T Center

TNT

2

Wednesday, May 8

9:30 p.m.

AT&T Center

 

TNT

3

Friday, May 10

10:30 p.m.

Oracle Arena

 

ESPN

4

Sunday, May 12

3:30 p.m.

Oracle Arena

 

ABC

5*

Tuesday, May 14

9:30 p.m.

AT&T Center

 

TNT

6*

Thursday, May 16

TBD

Oracle Arena

 

ESPN

7*

Sunday, May 19

TBD

AT&T Center

 

TBD

*If necessary.

 

Regular-Season Record and Leaders

Record: 58-24

Points Leader: Tony Parker (20.3 PPG)

Rebounds Leader: Tim Duncan (9.9 RPG)

Assists Leader: Tony Parker (7.6 APG)

 

Spurs Playoff Breakdown

Biggest Strength: Balance

During the regular season, the San Antonio Spurs finished seventh in the NBA in offensive efficiency and third in defensive efficiency. 

Led by heady point guard Tony Parker, the Spurs' ball movement and unselfishness—they assisted on 64.1 percent of their baskets, third most in the league—is truly a joy to watch.

In the half court, their ability to run the pick-and-roll through Parker and Ginobili, who both have the ability to either create off the bounce, shoot or find an open shooter, is undoubtedly option No. 1. But the ageless Tim Duncan, who can score in a variety of ways, and Tiago Splitter give even added versatility.

Of course, they don't mind getting out in transition, either—the Spurs finished the season with the sixth-fastest pace in the NBA.

Defensively, the Spurs have a litter of playmakers—Ginobili, Duncan, Kawhi Leonard—to go with an intelligent, well-oiled team defense that will make Curry and Golden State's shooters work for open looks.

 

Biggest Weakness: Ability to Go Small

The Warriors found success in the first round by moving Harrison Barnes to power forward. When they put the rookie next to Andrew Bogut with Curry, Jarrett Jack and Klay Thompson on the outside, they compiled a staggering 111.8 offensive rating and 96.3 defensive rating against the Nuggets.

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

San Antonio, which is much more comfortable with two traditional bigs down low, doesn't want to try to match up with that

According to 82games.com, San Antonio's most common "small" lineup—AKA the one with a 4 capable of matching Barnes' quickness—consisted of Parker, Ginobili, Danny Green, Leonard and Duncan. 

It played a whopping 36.5 minutes during the regular season and compiled a plus/minus of minus-14, making it one of the Spurs' worst 5-man units. 

 

Key Player: Steph Curry

Usually a player from the Spurs would go here, but there's little question about the danger that resides within Curry's shooting hand. 

One only needs to see his legendary Game 4 third quarter against the Denver Nuggets:

Unlike many shooters who have the ability to catch fire like that, Curry is more than a spot-up shooter. He is most dangerous off the dribble and above the break—whether it be off a screen or a pull-up in transition:

Photo courtesy of NBA.com

Curry will undoubtedly get his points, but Parker and Co. must make him work. 

 

Who ya got?

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Prediction

This is going to be the most captivating series of the second round. 

Both teams play an entertaining, up-tempo style, and both have players capable of putting on enthralling individual efforts. 

In the end, the Spurs, who went 2-2 against Golden State during the regular season, have the toughness and cohesion on defense to slow down Golden State's slew of offensive weapons.

Spurs win in six games, go through to the Western Conference finals

 

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