SAN ANTONIO – Sacramento coach Dave Joerger said Patty Mills could start "on a lot of teams" after he helped the Spurs overcame a 28-point deficit to beat the Kings on Wednesday night.
The Golden State Warriors probably would agree with Joerger after watching Mills burn them in the first half Saturday night.
Mills scored 21 points and nailed five 3-pointers, all in the first two quarters, as the Spurs raced to a 107-85 victory over the Warriors in a clash between short-handed teams at the AT&T Center. The five 3-pointers matched his season high.
The Silver and Black shot a scorching 61.1 percent (11/18) from the 3-point line in the first half, when they led 64-44 going into intermission.
"We've been getting along this season because everyone is on the same page," Mills said, "And no matter who's on the floor, or who's not, everyone understands the game plan, understands our system and where we're trying to get to in terms of our big picture.For us, it wasn't really a change on our end or what we're trying to do."
Mills made 8 of 13 shots, including 5 of 7 from beyond the arc, and dished out four assists in 21 minutes. He went 0 for 3 in the third quarter and did not play in the fourth period because the Spurs were up by 23 heading into the final 12 minutes.
The Silver and Black played without Kawhi Leonard (concussion protocol), LaMarcus Aldridge (medical), Tony Parker (back stiffness) and Dajounte Murray (left groin tightness).
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich started Mills, Danny Green, Kyle Anderson, David Lee and Dewayne Dedmon.
With his team already missing Kevin Durant, who's been out since sustaining a knee injury Feb. 28, Golden State coach Steve Kerr rested Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala.
"It's a win we're going to accept and keep, but it wasn't a fair fight," Popovich said. "They're Golden State. Their top four or five players weren't there, if anybody didn't notice. We're supposed to win a basketball game like that, and we focused and we did it.
The Spurs (51-14) led 33-22 after one quarter and 64-44 at halftime. They outscored Golden State 22-19 in the third quarter to take an 86-63 lead into the final period.
The Warriors (52-14) have gone 2-5 without Durant. Golden State coach started Patrick McCaw, Shaun Livingston, Zaza Pachulia, Matt Barnes and Kevon Looney.
Davis Bertans (13), Kyle Anderson (13), David Lee (12) and Pau Gasol (10) rounded out the Spurs’ double-figure scoring.
Ian Clark came off the bench to lead the Warriors with a career-high 36 points, hitting 15 of 21 shots, including 3 of 3 from long distance.
The Silver and Black shot 51.9 percent overall (40/77) and were 44.4 percent (12/27) from the 3-point line. They were a scorching 11 of 18 (61.1 percent) from the 3-point line in the first half. They finished the game with 27 assists and 40 field goals.
Mills drained 5 of his 6 shots from beyond the arc in the first half, and all four of his 3-point attempts in the second quarter.
"I think, for me personally, the aggressive mindset needs to be there no matter who's on the court and who's not," Mills said. "That's something that I've been trying to focus on a little bit more this end of the season going into the playoffs. Like I said, everyone is on the same page understanding what we're trying to do."
The Spurs host Memphis on Monday night.
Here is a quarter-by-quarter breakdown of the Warriors-Spurs game Saturday night:
Final: Spurs 107, Warriors 85. Patty Mills leads the Spurs with 21 points. Ian Clark scored 36 for Golden State. The Spurs improved to 51-14 and Warriors slip to 52-14. The Silver and Black lead the season series 2-1.
Fourth quarter (5:12): Spurs 97, Warriors 75.
End of third quarter: Spurs 86, Warriors 63. Patty Mills leads the Silver and Black with 21 points, but he went 0 for 3 in the third period. David Lee (12), Davis Bertans (11) and Pau Gasol are the other Spurs in double figures. Ian Clark leads Golden State with 20 points.
Third quarter (2:48): Spurs 81, Warriors 57. Patty Mills and David Lee lead the Silver and Black with 21 and 12 points, respectively. Davis Bertans has 11 points.
Third quarter (6:05): Spurs 74, Warriors 50. David Lee has scored eight of his 12 points in the first six minutes of the third period.
Halftime: Spurs 64, Warriors 44. Patty Hills scored 21 points on 8 of 10 shooting, including 5 of 6 from the 3-point line, in the first two quarters. He drained all four of his 3-point attempts in the second quarter.
First-half notes: The Spurs started Patty Mills, Danny Green, Kyle Anderson, David Lee and Dewayne Dedmon. The Silver and Black were a scorching 11 of 18 (61.1 percent) from the 3-point line in the first two quarters. The Spurs led 33-22 after one quarter and outscored the Warriors 31-22 in the second period to extend their lead to 20 points at the half. Davis Bertans made 3 of 4 shots from beyond the arc and finished the half with 11 points . . . The Spurs shot 55.8 percent (24/43) from the field in the first half . . . Ian Clark and Matt Barnes led Golden State with 13 and 12 points, respectively. The Warriors shot 32.7 percent (16/49) from the field. They were 3 of 10 from long distance.
Second quarter (2:40): Spurs 58, Warriors 43. Patty Mills has buried 4 of 5 shots from the 3-point line and leads the Silver and Black with 18 points. He has nailed three treys in the second quarter and is 7 of 9 overall for the game.
Second quarter (6:18): Spurs 53, Warriors 37. The Silver and Black have nailed 3-pointers on four of their last five possession. Davis Bertans and Patty Mills have hit two each.
Second quarter (9:29): Spurs 37, Warriors 28. Patty Mills has hit 4 of 5 shots, including 1 of 2 from beyond the arc, and leads the Silver and Black with nine points.
End of first quarter: Spurs 33, Warriors 22. Patty Mills and Dewayne Dedmon lead the Silver and Black with nine and six points, respectively.
First quarter (2:38): Spurs 25, Warriors 20. Patty Mills leads the Silver and Black with nine points on 4-of-5 shooting.
First quarter (5:59): Spurs 19, Warriors 11. Patty Mills and Kyle Anderson have scored six and five points, respectively, for the Silver and Black. Dewayne Dedmon has scored on two alley-oop dunks. Assist to Mills on both plays.
Highly anticipated Warriors-Spurs matchup quickly lost its sizzle
Golden State Warriors (52-13) vs. Spurs (50-14)
Tipoff: 7:30 p.m., Saturday, AT&T Center
Warriors’ last game: Lost to Timberwolves 103-102, Friday, Minneapolis
Spurs’ last game: Lost to Thunder 102-92, Thursday, Oklahoma City
Warriors’ last 10 games: 6-4, lost last two
Spurs’ last 10 games: 9-1, lost last game
Season series: Spurs lead 1-0
Last meeting: Spurs 129, Warriors 100, Oct. 25, Oakland, Calif.
Notable: At 50-14, the Silver and Black have equaled the third-best record ever through 64 games in franchise story.
SAN ANTONIO – What was expected to be a marquee matchup in the homestretch of the season lost its sizzle this week, crumbling under the weight of injuries, a medical issue and players being held out to get much-needed rest.
The Golden State Warriors (52-13) and San Antonio Spurs (50-14) have the best records in the NBA and are the only two teams in the league that have 50 victories, but each squad will be missing its best players when they meet for the second time this season Saturday night at the AT&T Center.
Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Tony Parker (back stiffness) and Dejounte Murray (left groin tightness) are all out.
Leonard is in the midst of the NBA’s concussion protocol after taking a blow to the face in Thursday’s loss at Oklahoma City and Aldridge is out indefinitely as he undergoes tests for a minor heart arrhythmia.
“He’s just moving through the protocol,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said of Leonard when he met with reporters before Saturday’s game. “They hope he’ll be fine by the end of it. It just takes a while. The next possible game is Monday (vs. Atlanta, at home). I’m hopeful he’ll be ready for that.”
Popovich said he didn’t know what step in the protocol Leonard is on, but he added that “he’s doing fine so far.”
Popovich was asked his reaction when he heard about Aldridge’s medical problem.
“Tony, it’s his back,” Popovich said. “Dejounte, it’s his pelvic bone. And somebody says ‘heart.’ You’re thinking possible more long-term stuff. That’s a little scary. You don’t go there yet. They did tests today and they’re going to continue it on Monday. He’s going to see some people on Monday. Based on what they do and see, we’ll figure out what we’re looking at. I don’t know right now.”
The Silver and Black opened their season with a 129-100 rout of Golden State on Oct. 25 in Oakland, but it’s been the Warriors who have sat atop the Western Conference standings throughout the season.
The matchup started to lose some of its glitter Feb. 28 when Golden State All-Star forward Kevin Durant went down with a knee injury in a loss to Washington. But even without Durant, the Warriors still pack a powerful punch.
The clash lost all its luster when Golden State coach Steve Kerr announced Friday night after the Warriors’ loss at Minnesota that Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala would not play against the Spurs.
Kerr told reporters before Saturday’s game that he planned to start Patrick McCaw, Shaun Livingston, Matt Barnes, Kevon Looney and Zaza Pachulia.
The Warriors are playing their sixth game in 10 days.
“Steve’s schedule is such that this is where he’s going to rest them,” Popovich said. “They do a lot like we do. It doesn’t matter who you’re playing. You look at your schedule and see what’s going. They got in real late last night after Minnesota.”
The Spurs will start Patty Mills, Danny Green, Kyle Anderson, David Lee and Dewayne Dedmon, Popovich said.
“I’m going to show up and watch the whole thing,” Popovich said. “It ain’t going to be pretty. The guys that are out there are going to compete their butts off. They’re going to all try to win. Some guys will play well and some guys will play poorly. We’ll see what happens.”
Next up for the Spurs: vs. Atlanta, 7 p.m., Monday, AT&T Center
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