As the guys from The Basketball Jones proclaimed, Game 2 was like “watching three games within a game” as we saw San Antonio take a 2-0 lead in the series. For the first half we saw the Spurs absolutely dominate Oklahoma with some of the most impressive ball movement you’ll ever see. Open shots were falling, Tony Parker was wheeling and dealing, and the Thunder had no answers.
During the third quarter Oklahoma started deliberately sending San Antonio’s Tiago Splitter to the line in what was non-creatively referred to by the media as “Hack-A-Splitter”. This strategy didn’t do much to trim the 14-18 point deficit but really sucked the life out of the crowd and as a result, the game.
In the fourth quarter the Thunder made an incredible run, seemingly re-energising themselves for a final shot at a Texas split only to fall short at the end. San Antonio were victorious 120-111 and now travel to Oklahoma City with not only a comforting 2-0 lead in the series but also a 20-game winning streak dating back to the regular season.
Tony Parker was unbelievable in this game for the Spurs, scoring 34 points on 16-21 shooting and registering eight assists. It seemed everything Parker touched, turned into points for San Antonio. Driving off the pick and roll and making the “right” play on seemingly every occasion made this a game for the ages. If he wasn’t scoring, he was setting up the right teammate with a great look at the basket. If the defense sagged, Parker would pull up for the 18 footer. Simply amazing to watch.
While Oklahoma City got great offensive contributions from stars Kevin Durant (31 points, five rebounds, five assists), Russell Westbrook (27 points, seven rebounds eight assists) and James Harden (30 points, seven rebounds) they were left wanting on the defense end. Thunder big men Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins were certainly active but with the ball movement supplied by the Spurs, OKC were unable to influence the game from the defensive end.
No team in NBA history has come back from an 0-3 deficit, so the Thunder will be making adjustments and hoping for some home cooking on Thursday night (US time) in Game 3.