Archive for May 26th, 2008

Conference finals notes

Boston has yet to trail a series in the postseason. The Celtics are 9-1 at home and 1-6 on the road. Los Angeles also has not trailed in a series. The Lakers are 7-0 at home and 3-3 on the road. San Antonio is 7-0 at home in this postseason and has won 13 straight home games overall.

The Spurs held the Lakers, who lead the postseason in scoring at 107.3 points per game, to 83 points in Game 3. Overall, the Spurs are allowing an average of 97.3 points during the postseason, including 91.6 at home.

Boston is allowing the fewest points in the playoffs at 86.4 points per game.

San Antonio’s Tim Duncan, who scored 22 points in Sunday’s Game 3 win over the Los Angeles Lakers, has now scored at least 20 points in 72 postseason games since 2003, the most 20-point games during that period. Detroit’s Richard Hamilton has scored 20-plus points in 70 playoff games since that time. Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki (56) and Los Angeles’ Kobe Bryant (53) round out the top four.

In Sunday’s Game 3 win, Duncan had 22 points and 21 rebounds, joining Dwight Howard and Carlos Boozer as the only players with 20-20 games in this postseason.

Manu Ginobili (30 points), Duncan (22) and Tony Parker (20) each scored at least 20 points in the Spurs’ Game 3 win Sunday, the 14th time the trio has scored 20-plus points in the same playoff game. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, all time, Boston’s Larry Bird, Dennis Johnson and Kevin McHale scored at least 20 in the same playoff game 15 times, while Philadelphia’s Wilt Chamberlain, Hal Greer and Chet Walker also did it 14 times.

Hamilton, who has 2,348 career points in the playoffs, broke Isiah Thomas’ franchise record for postseason scoring this year. He scored a game-high 26 points in Boston’s 94-80 win in Game 3 and matched a team record by making all 16 of his free throws.

Rookie Rodney Stuckey is averaging 13 points for Detroit in the conference finals after averaging 9.8 in the semifinals, 5.2 in the first round and 7.6 during the regular season.

Boston’s Rajon Rondo is averaging 11.1 points, 4.2 rebounds, 6.6 assists and 1.76 steals in 32.7 minutes per game during the playoffs. During the regular season, the second-year guard averaged 10.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 1.68 steals in 29.9 minutes per game.

- NBA News

May 25: Spurs 103, Lakers 84

The AP reports: “He is such a competitor,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said after Manu Ginobili scored 30 points to lead the Spurs to a 103-84 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals… Tim Duncan had 22 points, 21 rebounds and five assists, and Tony Parker added 20 points and five assists for the Spurs, who remained unbeaten at home this postseason. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 30 points and Pau Gasol scored 15… Lamar Odom struggled all night, finishing 2-of-11 from the field for seven points. But he had six of the Lakers’ 13 assists and 11 rebounds… Up 69-57 entering the fourth, the Spurs opened with a 12-4 run, and Parker’s layup gave them a 20-point lead with a little over 8 minutes to play. Then Bryant did what Bryant does: almost single-handedly pulled his team out of the hole. He hit four 3-pointers over the course of less than 2 1/2 minutes and his last one brought the Lakers within 88-76 with 5 minutes to play… The Lakers struggled in the second quarter—turning the ball over early in the period on a shot-clock violation, missing free throws and shooting 7-of-17 from the field—and the Spurs pulled away. Stat Notes: The Spurs shot 51.4%, the Lakers 42.7%. The Spurs nailed a terrific 10-of-18 three-pointers (Ginobili hit 5 threes), the Lakers a decent 6-of-17. The Spurs hit a decent 17-of-23 free throws, the Lakers an awful 8-of-17. The Lakers had a few more rebounds, but the Spurs had 22 assists, the Lakers just 13. Turnovers were close.

For the Spurs, Ginobili (9-of-15, 5-of-7 threes) had 30 points (and not much else) off the bench. Tim Duncan (8-of-17) had 22 points, 21 rebounds and 5 assists. Tony Parker (9-of-15) had 20 points and 5 assists. Mike Finley scored 8, Francisco Oberto 7, Brent Barry 6 off the bench.

For the Lakers, Kobe Bryant (13-of-23) had 30 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals, but 4 turnovers and one assist. Pau Gasol needed 18 shots for 15 points and not much else. Jordan Farmar (4-of-9, 2-of-3 threes) scored 10 off the bench. Vladimir Radmanovic on 8 shots had 9 points and 9 rebounds. Lamar Odom (awful 2-of-11) had 7 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists, but 5 turnovers. Derek Fisher and Sasha Vujacic were lousy.

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