Putting up 72 points in one half is amazing. Doing it on the heels of that abysmal 28 point second half in Boston is therapeutic. We had the lead built to 27 at the break and cruised to a 128-103 win. But that wasn’t all the good news. We now have our second double digit winning streak of the season and all the other top teams lost. Heat, Thunder, Lakers, Mavs, etc. We are now first in the West and trail only the Bulls in the loss column in the entire league.
In the end, this game was about balance. The balanced playing time. Stephen Jackson logged a team-high 24:50. 13 players played at least 10 minutes. About the only number I’m *not* happy with is Tiago’s 11:28. I’d like to see him playing 15-20 every night for conditioning purposes. That said, we’ve got a home-and-home coming up with Utah’s big front line so I expect he’ll get plenty of minutes there.
Song of the Game: That’s The Way I Like It by KC & The Sunshine Band
Yes, it’s disco night here at the TBF. “That’s The Way I Like It” is just like this game. Fun, fun, fun. It’s a party from start to finish.
Play of the Game: Manu To Patrick Mills
Sometimes you see something so beautiful you can’t possibly describe it. That’s what Manu’s pass to Patrick (he prefers Patrick to Patty, fyi) was like. Go find the highlight somewhere. You can start here. When watching the play, Manu’s genius jumps off the screen. But, watch Patrick from beginning to end. He out runs several people to make that play happen. As much as Manu’s genius is beautiful, it’s foundation is in the hustle of the team.
Trending Up: Rebounding
I mentioned this in my last recap and I’m bringing it up again. We just whipped the Hornets on the glass 40-29. You probably didn’t know this, but the Hornets were a top-10 rebounding team (in differential) coming into the game. During our 10-game winning streak, we are beating our opponents by 10 boards/game on the glass. Additionally, we are now the seventh best rebounding team in the league. We are easily the best defensive rebounding team in the league. Our defensive rebounding percentage is a ridiculous 77.9%. Next closest in the league is 75.9%. Our defense might not be the greatest, but our ability to clean the glass is tremendous.
Our next three games — Utah, Utah, and Lakers — are #3 and #2 in the league in rebounding percentage. Let’s see how we do against them.
Trending Down: Nothing
Seriously, what bad thing could I say about this game. We sent the Hornets to the line too much? Ok, how about that?
Stat of the Game: 31 Assists
We are putting up crazy high assist numbers lately and it really makes for a beautiful game to watch. I honestly don’t think there is a more enjoyable team to watch in the league.
Last night, I noticed that Kawhi was clapping and cheering from the bench. Maybe even smiling some. What’s up with that? Maybe it’s because he threw down another nasty dunk on somebody’s head. I doubt it though. My guess is that Stephen Jackson just has an infectious spirit. Jack brought an intangible to this team that I didn’t expect. Passionate fun. I expected passionate competitiveness, but not the fun. It’a great to watch.
At one point in the second half last night, Pop subbed Jack out and as Jack went to the bench Pop called him over to his chair. Jack bent over and talked to Pop for quite some time, a possession or two. At the end, it looked like they were laughing some. I would love to know what that conversation was about.