After struggling through the first four games of the Finals, Ginobili erupted on Sunday night to the tune of 24 points on 8-of-14 shooting to go with 10 assists. ESPN Stats & Info details just how important Ginobili was to San Antonio's offense in Game 5.
Manu Ginobili had a series-high 50 touches in Game 5 & Spurs averaged 1.67 pts per play after a Ginobili touch (0.80 pts per play Games 1-4)— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 17, 2013
Ginobili came into Sunday night's game struggling, shooting just 34 percent from the field and an even worse 18 percent from three-point territory while looking like a shell of the man who's likely to end up in the Hall of Fame.
The Argentinian gave a huge boost for the Spurs, driving to the basket and creating scoring opportunities for himself and his teammates. At one point in Game 5, Ginobili had 14 points on nine drives to the basket. He had 14 points on 16 drives in the previous four games, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
The 35-year-old nearly scored as many points in Game 5 as he did the first four games of the series combined.
If Ginobili plays like this in Game 6, the Heat are goners.
They've already proven they can't stick with Danny Green, who set a new record for the most three-pointers in an NBA Finals series, surpassing Ray Allen on Sunday night.
How will this series end?
If the Heat have to worry about keeping Tony Parker out of the lane, Green burying contested threes from the outside, Tim Duncan fundamentally working in the post and now Ginobili driving and hitting off-balance shots, there's going to be disappointment in Miami on Tuesday night.
Ginobili is the spark plug that energizes San Antonio, and he was full of juice on Sunday night.
The resurgence of everyone's favorite Argentinian should have the Heat worried, and if Erik Spoelstra and Miami don't game-plan accordingly, the Spurs franchise will have its fifth championship.