Originally written on Project Spurs  |  Last updated 11/16/14
The San Antonio Spurs barely escaped the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night in a 99-97 contest at the AT&T Center. The Spurs were without Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili while the Hawks sat Al Horford and Josh Smith.   This gave San Antonio a huge advantage in the paint with Tim Duncan playing against Atlanta's reserves and he didn't disappoint with a 31 point and 14 rebound night. The rest of the team was a disappointment however. Duncan shot 12-21 field goals in this game and Kawhi Leonard chipped in 7-10 for 23 points, but everyone else wasn't close to those statistics in overall shots taken with shots made. The team also shot 20% (3-15) from the 3-point arc, a reason why the team had to lean so heavily on Duncan for the entire game. Head coach Gregg Popovich wasn't too pleased with the outing from his team either. "In general, other than Timmy, in a lot of ways it was a pathetic performance." said Popovich. "It's not the first time we've played like that in the last few weeks. This team needs to get its head around itself and understand what it takes to be there because as a group, they don't have it right now."   The Spurs have been struggling and the recent injuries to the team hasn't helped either. Popovich has a reason to be frustrated though because the Spurs have played sharp with their second and third units this season and haven't come close to repeating those performances during this stretch.   The team has been relying on 36 year old Tim Duncan like the team did 10 years ago and we don't know how long he can keep this up at his age. The team definitely needs to step up and give him rest where the majority of the games in the playoffs are every other day with little rest in between. With Tony Parker possibly limping into the playoffs and Manu Ginobili's status unknown as to when he'll return, the Spurs need to afford Duncan some rest and that will only come with improved chemistry. If the team can't start playing smarter and more effective, the depth of this time won't matter in the long run.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Lovie Smith denies Bucs tanked to secure #1 pick in 2015 Draft

Report: Jets will fire Rex Ryan, GM John Idzik on Monday

Braxton Miller has 'expressed interest' in Duke transfer?

Jim Harbaugh, 49ers mutually part ways

Mike Wallace benched for disciplinary reasons

Browns owner sends stern message to Johnny Manziel

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ray Allen is leaning toward retirement

Ravens clinch playoff spot

DeMarco Murray, Dez Bryant set Cowboys records in win

Report: Browns feel Josh Gordon 'has to go'

Jets contacted Rex Ryan's agent about replacements for him

Justin Gilbert inactive after being late to team meeting

10 takeaways from NFL Week 17

WATCH: Mike Tomlin goes after Reggie Nelson after game

WATCH: Ndamukong Suh steps on Aaron Rodgers

Nation's top recruit says he won't follow Jim Harbaugh

Eric Decker's wife was concerned about hubby's groin

WATCH: Lamar Miller has longest run in Dolphins history

WATCH: Pats fans serenade Pete Frates with 'Happy Birthday'

Harbaugh rumors affecting Mich. basketball ticket prices?

WATCH: Dez Bryant burns Redskins defender for TD

Detroit bar offering free food, booze if Lions beat Packers

Jameis Winston: I would throw in Richard Sherman's direction

WATCH: Nebraska safety pukes on field, keeps playing

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.

WATCH: Suh steps on Aaron Rodgers

Browns owner sends message to Manziel

Ray Allen leaning toward retirement?

Ravens clinch playoff spot

Murray, Bryant set team records

Pats fans serenade Pete Frates

Browns to part ways with Josh Gordon?

Manziel was late after throwing party?

Amari Cooper not a fan of New Orleans

Harbaugh to Mich. is done deal

WATCH: Jennifer Lawrence supports Louisville with chant

Did Bielema do ‘Horns Down’?

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.