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Pelicans lose to Spurs by 2. Dangit.
The Pelicans failed to capitalize on their strength advantage as the Spurs – a lousy rebounding team, controlled the boards and edged out a two point win. My observations:
- Russ wasn’t wearing his awesome pastel shoes tonight. It made me sad. I think it also affected his game. His opening quarter was brutal. Almost every time he got near the rim, something bad happened. The truth, however, is the Pelicans looked awful offensively when Russ sat down as the team’s ability to get penetration sputtered. Even if he mixed turnovers in with bad floaters, he also opened up numerous offensive rebounds and wing jumpers with his assaults on the rim. He finished with 14 points, 10 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 turnovers. I”m not sure I believe it was only 3.
- Russ’s ability to anticipate where a dribbler is going is awesome. He beats people to their spot all the time.
- The Miscues were comical early in the game. I particularly loved the alley-oop that had two different players in position to dunk it. Both saw it, thought it was for the other guy, and pulled back. Turnover.
- Joel Meyers voice is fantastic. The Lakers have let a lot of talent go recently – but Joel might be the dumbest cut.
- Fells is a shooter with a few moves of the dribble. Not much to say about him except that his shooting made me cackle more than once. Yes, I cackle. Shut up.
- Josh Carter? Every bit the shooter Fells has been. And better shoes. I love eye-searing yellow shoes.
- Everyone on the Spurs wanted to take 18-footers. I mean everyone. They did hit a lot of them.
- The Pelicans tried riding Onoaku in the post whenever he was out there, and it didn’t work at all. Sometimes he failed to seal, sometimes he caught and dribbled himself nowhere, spun a couple times, and passed out for no advantage. He also missed 8,734 easy layups. Give or take 8,730 o f them.
- Of couse, Withey and Young made Onuaku look like a layup master. I’m telling you – Rim brick-fest all night. The Pelicans should have won this game at the rim, much less the line. And oh, the line . . .
- The Pelicans couldn’t hit a free throw. At all. Everyone was missing. Game was even all fourth – but the Pelicans left 15 points at the line, including two bricks with 30 seconds to go that would have put the team up 3. Sad face again.
- In the fourth, the Pelicans stopped playing Young and Withey together out there, which helped because Austin Daye was destroying them as a stretch forward. Then, for the last 2 minutes, they put both of them back out there, and Daye wasn’t really contained. That made me make my sad face too.
- DeQuan Jones is a pure slasher. Even if he’s open, he’s taking the ball to the hole. I wasn’t sure he even had a jumper until he buried a rainbow three pointer with 30 seconds to go. If I was picking a SF to make training camp right now – I take Jones. (Though if he keeps forgetting what a rebound is, maybe I become a free agent SF promoter)
One day, I’ll learn not to make fun of the other team in my preview. That never ends well.
Spurs 21-23 at the line....Pels 15-30 with the worst as you said the two that could have sealed it...looked like we struggled defensively to stop the Spurs movement tonight, but the consistent lack of rim finishes and the awful free throw shooting, especially from the guards...just never should have lost and could have went 3-0 into the tourney with a high seed.