NBA

Mon, Nov 1, 2010 - 10:30 PM ET
Game Preview
 

Spurs-Clippers Preview

Share This Story

   
 

The Los Angeles Clippers have lost 16 straight games against the San Antonio Spurs. They're hoping that will change now that Blake Griffin is on the court.

Griffin will face Tim Duncan and the Spurs for the first time Monday night when the Clippers try to avoid a third straight 0-4 start.

San Antonio (1-1) hasn't lost to Los Angeles (0-3) since falling 98-85 on March 7, 2006. The Spurs have won 24 of the last 25 meetings, including the last eight at Staples Center.

Duncan has usually had his way against the Clippers, although the 34-year-old has seen his minutes drop in recent seasons since coach Gregg Popovich has chosen to give him extra rest. This will be his first matchup with the 21-year-old Griffin, who was drafted first overall in 2009 - 12 years after Duncan was chosen by the Spurs.

Griffin missed all of last season with a knee injury, but has looked healthy now that his rookie season has finally gotten underway. He fell just short of his third straight double-double to start his career with 16 points and nine rebounds in Sunday's 99-83 home loss to Dallas.

He was the Clippers' leading scorer as the backcourt of Baron Davis and Eric Gordon struggled to combine for 16 points on 5-of-19 shooting.

"We got down offensively and didn't make shots, which affected our defense," Davis said.

Los Angeles is the worst shooting team in the NBA at 37.7 percent, and has put up plenty of 3-pointers with at least 18 in every game. The Clippers are adjusting to a new offense under coach Vinny Del Negro.

"Our tempo has to pick up. I don't like our tempo right now,'' said Del Negro, who was fired by Chicago in May after two straight .500 seasons. "We have to push the ball a little bit more and get more field goal attempts. We have to get the ball in the attack some more, then get into play sets and set up screens and be more efficient with our timing and execution.''

Popovich is very familiar with Del Negro having coached the guard for many years with San Antonio. The Clippers' woeful offense may be exactly what the Spurs need to see.

San Antonio has been one of the top defensive teams in the NBA since the arrival of Duncan, but has allowed its first two opponents to shoot 51.6 percent. The Spurs allowed New Orleans to shoot 50.0 percent in Saturday's 99-90 home loss.

"It's always my No. 1 concern," said Popovich about his team's defense. "If we win 10 in a row or lose 10 in a row, it's always a major concern."

Duncan had seven points and seven rebounds while Tony Parker had 13 points and four assists. Their lack of production was a major reason why Popovich benched both of the stars for most of the fourth quarter.

"In 82 games, sometimes you are going to have a night off where the second unit comes in, plays better and Pop adjusts and sticks with it," said Manu Ginobili, who scored 23 points. "What made it tough was that it was both Tim and Tony out."

Tagged: Clippers, Spurs, Tim Duncan

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Clippers/browse/featuredproduct/491845/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_491000/ff_491845_xl.jpg&w=100 59.95 adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red
    adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/498609/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_498000/ff_498609_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black
    adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/620470/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_620000/ff_620470_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey..
    Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Antonio_Spurs/browse/featuredproduct/692239/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_692000/ff_692239_xl.jpg&w=100 25.95 Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat
    Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/851828/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851828_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black
    Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/851842/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851842_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White
    adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/890174/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890174_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Wh..
    adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room Flex Hat - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/890384/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890384_xl.jpg&w=100 19.99 adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room F..