San Antonio’s ability to be without a player, just plug in another guy and make it work is the stuff of legend.
However, it’s a lot harder for them to do this with Tony Parker than anyone else — he is the focal point of the offense. Yet that’s what the Spurs are going to have to do this week in an already difficult back-to-back.
Parker will be out for at least two games due to a shin contusion, the team announced Tuesday. The injury happened in the Spurs loss to the Clippers. Parker will miss Wednesday night against the Suns, also Thursday night in a nationally televised game against Golden State.
We say at least, remember it was a shin contusion that had Eric Bledsoe missing 10 games. Let’s hope that is not the case here.
Parker is averaging 17.4 points a game on 51.4 percent shooting, he is shooting 40 percent from three, and dishing out better than six assists a game. Those numbers are actually down from last year.
If you wonder what this really means to the Spurs, just think back to the NBA Finals when Parker led the Spurs to the brink of an NBA title, looking like the third best player in the game. Now the Spurs will rely on Patty Mills, Nando De Colo and Cory Joseph. It’s not the same.
Stephen Curry has reached the transcendent point in his career. We’re now talking about if he has passed LeBron James as the best player on the planet (he has), and we’re starting to think about his legacy as the perfect point guard for a modern NBA small-ball, space-and-pace offense. Plus he’s just a joy to watch play.
“I don’t know – it’s a chicken and egg kind of conversation,” Curry said while laughing.
“We both have a creative style, a feel when you are out on the pitch or the court. I’m trying to do some fancy things out there with both hands, making crossover moves and having a certain flair to my game and that’s definitely the style Messi has when he is out there in his matches.”
I love Curry, but Messi is the bigger international star.
But I love the comparison in terms of the must-watch nature of the two stars, the flair in their games, the sense that you have to keep an eye on them at all times because the spectacular could happen any time they touch the ball. When the ball comes to them, everybody leads forward in their chairs. That is the sign of a real superstar.
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