Gregg Popovich Says Spurs Looked Like Deer in Headlights in Game 1 vs. Warriors

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistApril 15, 2018

OAKLAND, CA - APRIL 14:  Head coach Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs talks with his player Tony Parker #9 against the Golden State Warriors in the second quarter during Game One of the first round of the 2018 NBA Playoff at ORACLE Arena on April 14, 2018 in Oakland, 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 Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said he thought his team looked like "deer in headlights" during their 113-92 loss to the Golden State Warriors in Game 1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals on Saturday afternoon. 

"I thought we were very prepared physically and mentally," Popovich said, according to ESPN.com's Michael C. Wright. "But I was mistaken. As I said, we looked like deer in the headlights. The defense was really poor as far as following game plan of the first quarter, and it's a bad combination to play defense like that and not shoot at the other end."

Not only did the Warriors scorch San Antonio's defense to the tune of 54.3 percent shooting from the field and 45.5 percent from three, but the Spurs had trouble creating easy scoring chances on the other end. 

Only two Spurs players (LaMarcus Aldridge and Rudy Gay) made at least five shots, and San Antonio failed to consistently penetrate a stout Warriors defense that was strengthened by Andre Iguodala's inclusion in the starting lineup. 

ESPN Stats & Info provided a snapshot of the Spurs' lowlights: 

"They did what they're supposed to do, which is protect home court," Spurs point guard Dejounte Murray said, per Wright. "They won the first game. I think we came out not mentally prepared. As a group, there could be four guys prepared and one not prepared, but at the end of the day it's a group. When you've got one half prepared and one half not prepared, it doesn't work."

Game 2 will tip off Monday at 10:30 p.m. ET at Oracle Arena. 

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