UPDATE: After the Warriors loss in Minnesota, Coach Steve Kerr announced that Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andre Iguodala will sit out Saturday's game vs. the Spurs.
Kerr explained the move during the postgame press conference, saying it's been his plan for awhile:
Steve Kerr on why he's resting Steph Curry, Draymond Green, Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala vs Spurs tomorrow pic.twitter.com/ZchcFhxixM— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) March 11, 2017
The move gives the Spurs additional incentive to continue to rest Tony Parker, who sat out Thursday's game with back issues.
The Minnesota Timberwolves held on to beat the Golden State Warriors 103-102 on Friday night, meaning that the San Antonio Spurs can grab the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference on Saturday.
Because the Spurs beat the Warriors at the start of the season and only play each other three times this season, a San Antonio win Saturday night will not only tie them for the best record in the NBA, it would give them the tiebreaker for home court advantage throughout the playoffs.
All the Spurs would have to do is tie the Warriors at the end of the regular season and home court is theirs.
It's a tough time to be missing Kawhi Leonard, who will sit out Saturday's game in the NBA's concussion protocol. But the Warriors are missing Kevin Durant and playing the second game of a back-to-back set. And that second game will come after a majority of the Warriors starters had to play significant minutes in a comeback attempt that ultimately fell short.
Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green all played at least 35 minutes on Friday. Andre Iguodala even logged 31 minutes off the bench.
Aside from Kawhi missing the game, we won't know who else is out until Saturday afternoon as we approach game time. Tony Parker missed Thursday's game against the Thunder because of back issues. Kyle Anderson sat out after tweaking his knee earlier this week against the Kings.
Manu Ginobili should be back Saturday. Gregg Popovich sat him against the Thunder for rest.
The underrated part of this story is that the Minnesota Timberwolves are not to be trifled with. They're only two games back in the loss column for the No. 8 seed. The Spurs had trouble putting them away last weekend, but the Timberwolves are making a big push to sneak into the playoffs and now have impressive back-to-back wins over the Warriors and Clippers.
Whether it's the Spurs are the Warriors as the No. 1 seed, that opening round might not be as easy as it typically is if Minnesota qualifies for the playoffs.