The Spurs were outworked, out-manned and outdone last night, falling to the Grizzlies. And after such a terrific win against the Lakers last weekend, the Spurs have now lost two in a row and face the Nuggets tonight in what may be a vital game for avoiding the Lakers in the first round, which we’ve talked about a lot.
Thing is, the Spurs don’t really seem aware of the changed circumstances of their NBA lives. Consider this choice quote from Manu Ginobili about the game from Spurs blog 48 Minutes of Hell.
“It was a very disappointing loss, it was a game we were counting on,”
said Manu Ginobili.
Ginobili went on to essentially dismiss the Grizzlies’ play with a discussion of the Spurs’ letdown:
“Today we kind of took a break in the second quarter, relaxed a little and stopped playing ‘D’ as hard as we were,” Ginobili said. “And against a team that has nothing to lose, and is very talented, those shots tend to go in when you have no pressure.
But this Grizzlies team has split the season series with San Antonio. They’re not in the playoffs, because they play in the sadistic and masochistic Western Conference. In the East, they’d have a two game lead on the 8th spot. You can’t just show up and get a win against this team anymore.
And even against a weaker opponent, the Spurs aren’t guaranteed a win. They haven’t been there all year. They’ve gotten away from executing against opponents when they need to and are assuming their desire, no matter how half-assed it is, will carry them.
They’ve got a week to get themselves in a position to compete nightly. Or they can count on a longer vacation than they want.
On Monday, Dion Waiters agreed to a one-year, $2.9 million deal with the Heat, far less than most people thought he would get as one of the few significant free agents still on the market. Tuesday afternoon, he posted an explanation on Instagram for his deal.
Here’s what he said:
I didn’t do it for the money… I did it for the opportunity to go out & ball & have fun. Everything else will take care of its self!!! I just felt like it was the best situation for me…& my family. I could have waited & got wat I wanted. But I rather be happy then miserable at the end of the day!!! Meaning Yu can have everything & still not be happy… #heatnation let’s get it!!! #provethemwrong #stamped #Philly
It seems clear, based on the market, that the kinds of offers Waiters was hoping for weren’t out there for him. In Miami, with Dwyane Wade gone, he’ll probably start at shooting guard and have plenty of opportunities to prove himself in hopes of landing a long-term deal next summer.
While we wait for the Celtics to make a bigger move to trade for another star, they’re filling out the end of their roster. Sheridan Hoops’ Michael Scotto is reporting that they’ve signed Demetrius Jackson, the No. 45 pick in last month’s draft, to a four-year deal.
Jackson declared for the draft after his junior season at Notre Dame. Talent-wise, he has the chance to be a major steal for Boston — DraftExpress has him ranked as the 17th-best overall prospect in this year’s draft class. But he might not play much his first year. The Celtics’ roster is already crowded and there’s still the chance that they’ll make another move with some of their much-vaunted assets if the right star becomes available.
ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Hawks have signed undrafted rookie free agent center Matt Costello of Michigan State.
The 6-foot-9, 245-pound Costello averaged 5.7 points and 5 rebounds on the Hawks’ summer league team in Las Vegas.
Costello averaged 10.7 points and 8.2 rebounds as a senior at Michigan State. He holds the school’s career record with 146 blocked shots.
Terms of the deal were not released.
Jamal Crawford knows how to get buckets.
He does it against NBA level defenders, so put him in a free-flowing pro-am — let’s say the Seattle pro-am in his hometown — and he barely breaks a sweat dropping 44. And nailing the game winner.
Doc Rivers hopes to see a lot of that next season.