Found December 27, 2012 on
The San Antonio Spurs have gone away from the defensive, shutdown philosophy that made them so successful in the past. It’s not a huge problem because they’ve improved the offense as well and can still win by outscoring their opponents, but on the year, the Spurs are giving up 97 points per game.
One reason the Spurs could be giving up so many points is the fact that Kawhi Leonard, probably their best perimeter defender, has been out since mid-November. Since Leonard’s return last Friday, the Spurs haven’t reached their season average in points allowed, giving up 94 points against the Hornets, 91 against the Mavericks and just 80 against the Raptors.
It could just be the quality of the competition, but Leonard has surely provided a defensive spark, recording 10 steals in just three games (with reduced minutes). That’s 3.3 steals per game and to put that in perspective, the league leader in steals is Chris Paul, who averages 2.71 per game.
His teammates have surely noticed the effect Leonard has on the defense. Both Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili were singing his praises after the game against Toronto.
"Kawhi is creating a lot of turnovers himself,” said Duncan. “He's getting a lot of steals and turning that into offense. It's a big thing we've been missing the last couple of weeks with him gone. It's great to have that back. It's great to see him get those steals again and make it into something."
"Huge for us,” Ginobili said. “First of all, because he is one of the only true small forwards we've got with size and strength to guard big opponents. With his length and ability to read situations, he can get a lot of deflections and steals that give you a good lift in some parts of the game."
Keep an eye on the Spurs’ defensive numbers as Leonard continues to log more minutes, especially their overall points allowed. His contribution to the team will become even more apparent as the season rolls on.
BEST OF MAXIM
Former Spurs star and current team broadcaster Sean Elliott was named as one of San Antonio's top 100 residential water users in a list published by the city.
When Kawhi Leonard came back from injury, many San Antonio Spurs fans were excited and also worried if he would need a long time to adjust back into the thick of things. To their delight, the fan base can breathe a sigh of relief and re-new their hopes for a championship run.
Leonard got his shot back in the second game of his return against the Dallas Mavericks and, more importantly...
San Antonio Spurs fans know one side of Matt Bonner -- the guy at the 3-point line ready to launch a shot.
Outside of the court, the "Red Rocket" is a far different personality and if you've seen his "Coach B" videos, that personality is a little on the goofier side of life.
Nadia Bonner, Matt's wife of four years, gave an interview with UnionLeader...
Nando De Colo's rookie season with the San Antonio Spurs wasn't supposed to be this impressive.
He was supposed to be learning how to play the NBA style and grab a feel for things with his new teammates. The knock on him was that he wasn't athletic enough to be relevant in the game and his defense was poor.
If you've seen him play with the Spurs so far this...
SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili combined to score 84 points, and the San Antonio Spurs snapped the Houston Rockets' five-game winning streak with a 122-116 victory on Friday night.
Parker had 31 points and 10 assists, Duncan had 30 points and five rebounds, and Ginobili had a season-high 23 points for San Antonio (23-8). Danny Green was 5 for 7...
Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili combined to score 84 points, and the San Antonio Spurs ended the Houston Rockets' five-game winning streak with a 122-116 victory on Friday night.
Parker had 31 points and 10 assists, Duncan had 30 points and five rebounds and Ginobili had a season-high 23 points for San Antonio (23-8). Danny Green was 5-for-7 on 3-pointers and finished...
The San Antonio Spurs went “bombs away” on the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday, hitting 20 3-pointers against their I-35 rival. They came close to the NBA record of 23, but even if they didn’t make history, it was a very impressive showing.
Leading the charge was guard Danny Green, who went 7-8 from outside, leading all scorers in the game with 25 points.
It was great to...
The matchup of the game between the Toronto Raptors visiting the San Antonio Spurs in their last meeting of the season will be between Toronto's DeMar DeRozan and San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard.
The last time these two teams met up, the game ended in an exciting double overtime decision in Toronto.
The Spurs were without their starting small forward and top defender...
By now you have heard about the Nets firing former Spur Avery Johnson as head coach.
It came as a bit of a shock considering Johnson guided Brooklyn to an 11-4 start, but the team did go 3-10 since -- including two losses to those cross-borough rivals from Manhattan and an embarrassing 93-76 loss at home to Boston on Christmas Day.
Clearly, the Nets didn't want to exercise...
The San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors got things underway at the AT&T Center tonight and in the first half, the Spurs knew this Raptors team was not going to play like their record suggests heading into tonight's contest.
Thanks to some timely defense down the stretch of the first-half by Matt Bonner and Kawhi Leonard, the Spurs took a 44-37 halftime lead.
The San Antonio Spurs (22-8) and Houston Rockets (16-12) got things underway in San Antonio in a Texas sized showdown and it was a tale of two quarters.
Here is the first half recap.
Stat Leader: Danny Green with 14 points, and 2 rebounds.
Recap: The Spurs hot shooting from the three-point line continued as the team rained down threes in the quarter...
SAN ANTONIO - The San Antonio Spurs used a balance attack, with Tim Duncan scoring 15 points and Manu Ginobili 14, as they defeated the Toronto Raptors 100-80 Wednesday night at the AT&T Center. Tony Parker had 13 points, and Boris Diaw and Tiago Splitter each had 10, as San Antonio won its third in a row and improved its record to 22-8. Kawhi Leonard had 10 rebounds...
The matchup of the game for Friday night's game between the San Antonio Spurs and Houston Rockets is Tony Parker vs Jeremy Lin.
With James Harden out last game between the two clubs, Lin had a ridiculous game against the Spurs that saw him score 38 points and dish out 7 assists. The Spurs got the win though behind Parker's triple double of 27 points, 12 assists, and 12...
The second returns for the All-Star game are in and it's not looking good for the San Antonio Spurs and their fan base.
The Big 3 from the Spurs are behind by a large number of votes for the starting spots. The All-Star game is known for a popularity contest over being a legitimate honor for performances (like when Yao Ming kept getting voted in when he was injured). These...
The San Antonio Spurs (21-8) will host the Toronto Raptors (9-19) tonight in the AT&T Center as the Raptors put their current 5-game winning streak on the line.
This will be the Spurs and Raptors final meeting this season. It took double-overtime for the Spurs to beat the Raptors in Toronto last month 111-106. Tony Parker scored six of his 32 points in the second overtime...