Hawks-Spurs Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated April 06, 2013
While the slumping San Antonio Spurs are tied for the Western Conference lead, they may have to continue their quest for the No. 1 seed without their All-Star point guard. Tony Parker is unlikely to be available Saturday night as the Spurs go for a 15th consecutive home win over the Atlanta Hawks. After sitting out Wednesday's 98-84 win over Orlando due to a sore left ankle, Parker returned the following night in a crucial matchup at Oklahoma City. Parker, though, finished with two points on 1-of-6 shooting before leaving with a shin injury in a 100-88 loss. "It looked like he had no energy to start the game and then as he went, he looked to me like he was limping," coach Gregg Popovich said. "We saw him coming across halfcourt actually limping one time, and that's when we pulled him and I said to him, 'Tony, you got to stop.'" Losers in three of four, the Spurs, who also continue to play without the injured Manu Ginobili (strained hamstring), are tied with the Thunder for first place in the West. Oklahoma City holds the tiebreaker. "Obviously, Tony's down, Manu's down, so it's a concern, especially in this part of the season," said Tim Duncan, averaging 22.2 points and 11.9 rebounds over his last 10 games. "But it's part of the game, so we've got to play through it." While Parker's absence could prove costly, the team wants to make sure he's back to full strength come playoff time. Parker, averaging team highs of 20.6 points and 7.5 assists, is one of just three players averaging at least 20.0 and 7.0 per game. "I'm not going to talk about all my stuff. I've got a lot of stuff going on, but I just have to get healthy," said Parker, who also missed eight games in early March with left ankle troubles. "I'll just talk with the medical staff and talk with Pop and try to make the best decision and make sure I'm 100 percent and healthy for the playoffs, because that's the most important thing." The Spurs now turn their attention to Atlanta (42-35), which has been outscored by an average of 18.6 points during its skid in San Antonio. The Hawks have also dropped 11 of 12 in the series overall, including four straight. Parker had 23 points and 12 assists in the Spurs' 98-93 win at Atlanta on Jan. 19. The Hawks are coming off Friday's 101-90 loss to Philadelphia. Josh Smith had 19 points and Al Horford added 18 and 10 rebounds, but Atlanta was never really in it after getting outscored 40-26 in the first quarter. "How you can come out and play like that when the game has that type of meaning is beyond me," coach Larry Drew said. While they have already clinched a playoff berth, the Hawks dropped one game behind Chicago for fifth place in the East. "Going back to training camp ... we've had to be a team that is gritty, a blue-collar team, particularly on the defensive end," Drew told the league's official website. "Somewhere along the line, we have forgotten who we are. ... I'm very concerned about the mentality of our team." The Hawks, who have lost three straight road games against West opponents, have also dropped four of their last five road games when playing the second of back-to-backs.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Report: Giants will be ‘aggressive’ in trying to sign Jason Pierre-Paul

Report: Porzingis avoided ligament damage in ankle

Brooks Koepka meltdown includes whiff, stomping head off driver

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker