NBA

San Antonio Spurs cruise to Western play-off final

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After Miami had secured an Eastern conference final play-off place on Wednesday night, the attention turned to San Antonio and whether they can see off the Portland threat, and it was accomplished in style as Gregg Popovich's side beat the Trail Blazers 104-82 at the AT&T Centre.

Spurs finished top of the Western Conference this season and on route to facing Portland, Popovich's men took on the task of beating the Dallas Mavericks and after seven games San Antonio clinched a 4-3 victory.

But it seemed this was an easier task considering the series only reached five games. As Kawhi Leonard scored 22 points in the game and spoke to ESPN after the match explained he only wants to play the best teams.

"Whoever's the best team, I want to play them. It's going to prepare us for the (NBA) finals."

Spurs finished second in the Western Conference last campaign but beat Memphis Grizzlies 4-0 in the Western final to reach the NBA Finals where they fell hostage to the power of Miami.

LaMarcus Aldridge scored 21 points for the Trail Blazers but couldn't do enough to influence the tie in Portland's favour, as the centre spoke to ESPN after the defeat and believed Spurs gave them a real basketball lesson.

"They made five or six passes every possession down. It just makes your defense tired and just makes guys make mistakes. They definitely showed use where we are trying to go."

The first quarter ended in honours even at 19-19, as it wasn't exactly the slowest start to a game indulging fans the importance of this tie.

Tim Duncan managed eight points for the hosts with Kawhi Leonard adding four.

While Nicolas Batum hit seven for the visitors and LaMarcus Aldridge provided six points to level the tie.

But nine minutes in, Spurs' fans were left holding their breath as Tony Parker pulled his hamstring and had to make way until returning in the second period for one minute before having to come off again and to be replaced for the rest of the game.

In the second San Antonio turned up the pressure and went on to win the period 32-25.

Leonard scoring nine points and Danny Green scored seven in ten minutes.
LaMarcus Aldridge scored eight in the second with Robin Lopez providing six, but again it wasn't enough secure the quarter.

At the end of the first half the hosts were leading 51-44, as Popovich was calm in his approach and San Antonio secured the third quarter in style winning 26-19.

Forward Duncan played the full 12 minutes and scored seven, while Patty Mills scored six in ten minutes of play.

For the Trail Blazers Aldridge was leading the charge again scoring five points, but could only convert two of thesix attempted field goals.

Heading into the final quarter the Spurs had opened their lead up by 14 points, and some of Terry Stotts' players started to feel the defeat looming over their heads.

The despair of defeat had come for Portland as Popovich's team clinched the final quarter 27-19.

Danny Green scoring eight in eight minutes with both Mills and Leonard adding five to the board. While for Portland, Wesley Matthews and Damian Lillard both scored seven points in the eight minutes they featured.

This brings an end to Terry Stotts' campaign, but up next for Popovich's side is a final tie against either Oklahoma City Thunder of the LA Clippers.

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DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Topics:
Tony Parker
Western Conference
Portland Trail Blazers
NBA Playoffs
San Antonio Spurs
NBA

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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