That’s about as much emotion as Tim Duncan shows on the court.
Duncan became the oldest player in NBA history to notch a 20-20 (23 points, 21 rebounds) and he capped it off with this game winner to lift the Spurs over the Hawks Monday night, 102-100. So much for the struggling Duncan we had seen the first few weeks of the season.
The play itself was simple: Marco Belinelli inbounded the ball to Manu Ginobili then sprinted down to set a pindown screen for Duncan, who popped up by the elbow, caught the ball and had a clean look at a 17 footer. Drained it. The beauty of this was in the execution.
There was .04 left the Hawks didn’t have a miracle in them. Credit Atlanta, the fought back a couple of times at the end — including with an impressive Jeff Teague three to tie the game — but in the end they fall to 9-10, the Spurs are 15-3.
Report: Khris Middleton could return to Bucks before All-Star break
Sources told ESPN.com the Bucks think Middleton, who suffered a hamstring tear just days before the season began, “has a chance” to return to the lineup during a three-game homestand next month before the All-Star break.
Whether Middleton ultimately makes his season debut before or after the All-Star Game, he is expected to be kept on a minutes restriction as he eases way his back from the injury, sources said.
The Bucks have started Tony Snell, who has held his own as an outside shooter. But Middleton will upgrade Milwaukee on Snell’s biggest strength and provide massive defensive improvement. After a strong start, the Bucks have really struggled lately on that end.
Giannis Antetokounmpo has led Milwaukee to a 20-21 record, though the team is better than its won-loss mark indicates. The Bucks will be even better with Middleton, who will rival Jabari Parker as their second-best player and fit seamlessly.
Isaiah Thomas nutmegs Knicks center Marshall Plumlee (video)