The San Antonio Spurs used a strong shooting performance to pull off a decisive win against the Golden State Warriors in Game 5 of the Western Conference Semifinals on Tuesday night; it's the way they pulled off their 40-for-77, 51.9 percent shooting performance that stands out.
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The Spurs scored 44 points in the paint and scored 23 points off 14 Warriors turnovers, 11 of which came in the dominant second half. They scored 12 fast break points and converted on 5-of-5 looks in transition. They won the offensive rebounding battle, 8-7.
San Antonio won this game by making things easy on themselves, taking care of the basketball and converting on high-percentage shots. Their shot chart shows it:
In terms of easy shots, 42 of their 77 looks came from short range. That was largely due to the dribble penetration of Tony Parker, who knifed through the defense to score 25 points on 9-of-16 shooting, while dishing out 10 assists. Speaking of ball movement, that's another factor that caused the Spurs to shoot so efficiently.
"In the first half, the ball movement was great," Parker told reporters after the game. "In the second, we were aggressive."
The result of said movement was the 30 assists the Spurs ended up with at the end of the game and a second half that saw them make things look easy as they outran the younger Warriors out of the building. Part of that was due to head coach Gregg Popovich being so frugal with his stars' minutes down the stretch in the regular season.
"I want to make sure that we have Timmy (Duncan), Tony (Parker) and Manu (Ginobili) down the stretch in games. So I've got to make sure I manage it."
(Quotes via NBA Live Streaming)