San Antonio wins series 4-1 (Game 3 of 5)

San Antonio wins series 4-1

Game 1: Tuesday, May 6th
Trail Blazers92Final
Game 2: Thursday, May 8th
Trail Blazers97Final
Game 3: Saturday, May 10th
Trail Blazers103
Game 4: Monday, May 12th
Trail Blazers103
Game 5: Wednesday, May 14th
Trail Blazers82Final

Spurs 118

(62-20, 30-11 away)

Trail Blazers 103

(54-28, 31-10 home)

    Coverage: ESPN/WatchESPN

    10:30 PM ET, May 10, 2014

    Moda Center, Portland, OR

    1 2 3 4 T
    SA 28 32 23 35118
    POR 18 22 29 34103

    Top Performers

    SA: T. Parker 29 Pts, 2 Reb, 6 Ast, 1 Stl

    Por: N. Batum 20 Pts, 9 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Stl

    Spurs-Trail Blazers Preview

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Turns out a snake in their locker room was the least of the Trail Blazers' problems.

    Portland limped home down 2-0 in the Western Conference semifinals with the Spurs, and while their digs may be snake-free, the Blazers still have to figure out how to stop San Antonio when the teams meet again Saturday night at the Moda Center.

    Portland coach Terry Stotts summed it up during a timeout in Game 2, when he told the team: "We don't have a chance if we don't rebound and we don't defend."

    Only 16 teams have come back from a 2-0 deficit to win a playoff series, most recently the Memphis Grizzlies against the Los Angeles Clippers last season.

    The only time Portland has rebounded after a two-loss series start was the in 1977 finals against Philadelphia -- which remains the team's lone NBA championship.

    The Spurs have a 3-2 advantage over Portland in the playoffs, sweeping the last meeting in the 1999 conference finals. The teams split the regular-season series 2-2.

    San Antonio has dominated this one so far. On Thursday night, the Spurs built a 20-point lead and won 114-97. Kawhi Leonard scored 20 points, and Tony Parker had 16 points and 10 assists, leading a total of seven Spurs who scored in double figures.

    The Blazers' night got off to a strange start when reserve forward Thomas Robinson spied a snake in the locker room at AT&T Center.

    Because the snake hissed, the team at first thought it was a rattlesnake, but it later turned out it was not venomous. Needless to say, the snake sighting set the tone for the night and the Blazers played timidly throughout the loss.

    LaMarcus Aldridge, who averaged 29.8 points in Portland's first-round series against the Houston Rockets, scored 16 points, up against unrelenting defense from Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter.

    "We know that we haven't played our best basketball, so now we have to," Aldridge said. "Going home, every guy has to play better, starting with me, and I think every guy will."

    Nicolas Batum led the Blazers with 21 points and Damian Lillard had 19 in the loss.

    The Blazers were hurt when guard Mo Williams was pulled from the game because of a groin injury. Williams has consistently brought spark and leadership off the bench the whole season, and has capably filled in while Damian Lillard rests.

    Williams played just 9 minutes in Game 2, and the Spurs' backups outscored Portland's 50-19.

    Stotts told reporters on Friday that he anticipates that Williams will miss Game 3, so Earl Watson and Will Barton will help spell Lillard.

    The Spurs routed the Blazers 116-92 in the series opener after a hard-fought seven-game series against the Dallas Mavericks.

    "We did our part and won both games at home of this series, but the series starts when you win one on the road and we know it is one of the toughest arenas to play in," Parker said. "They play really well at home and they have a great crowd, so it is going to be about how we handle these next two games. We need to play with the same energy, take care of the ball, especially on the road, and play the same defense."

    Portland advanced to the second round for the first time since 2000 by defeating the Rockets in six games, clinching the series with Lillard's amazing 3-pointer at the buzzer at home for a 99-98 victory in the deciding game.

    "I think we have a bunch of competitors. They want to win. They know we can play better," Stotts said. "The fact that we kept coming back in the second half -- I am not worried about that part. Certainly frustrating to lose and to get blown out in Game 1 and not quite have enough in Game 2. I know we will be ready in Game 3."


    Research Notes

    The Spurs hold a 2-0 lead over the Trail Blazers as the series shifts to Portland. If the Trail Blazers have any hopes of making this a series, they'll have to sort out a few things on the defensive end of the floor. According to player-tracking data, only 53.1 percent of San Antonio's field goal attempts have been contested this series (64.0 percent of Portland's field goal attempts have been contested).
    From Elias: Fun fact from Elias in their Spurs-Trail Blazers game notes today... The Blazers have led for a total of 16 seconds in the 1st 2 games of their series against the Spurs.
    After a grueling 1st 6 games with the Mavericks, the Spurs have uncorked their powers in their last 3 outings, winning by an average of 21 points per game.
    Tony Parker was 8-of-13 for 18 points on shots from 15 feet or longer in Game 3. Parker was 9-of-24 for 19 points on such attempts in Games 1 and 2.
    Tiago Splitter continued to excel on the defensive end, holding LaMarcus Aldridge to 3-of-10 shooting for six points. Splitter also contained Dirk Nowitzki last series.
    They make them play the 2nd half in each game, but the Spurs have put these games away by halftime (this includes tonight).
    Tony Parker was 4-of-5 for 9 points when guarded by Damian Lillard in Game 3. Parker has gotten the best of Lillard this series, averaging nine points per game shooting 59% when Lillard is his primary defender.
    The Blazers have not had anyone that can guard Tony Parker thus far in the series.
    Damian Lillard has struggled with his jump shot this series after shooting 49% on jumpers against the Rockets, including his series winner.

    ESPN Stats & Information