San Antonio Spurs
|8:30 PM Mountain / 10:30 PM Eastern
I'm throwing up the game day thread a little early this time for those that are chomping at the bit to start the discussion. It's either a good time or a bad time for the Suns to be meeting the Spurs. On one hand, the Spurs aren't exactly setting the world on fire lately, having gone 7-8 in the month of January. They are also without starting point guard Tony Parker, and are coming off of their own equivalent of the Suns' recent loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves. If that wasn't bad enough for the defending champs, they have the added drama of Eva Longoria outing hubby Tony Parker as a faker (not to mention fans turning on playoff "hero" Robert Horry). So, either we're going to see a Spurs team playing like a wounded tiger with its back against the wall, or else we'll see the "who cares about the regular season" variety. Either way, it's a total bummer that Parker is sitting this one out. This is yet another lose-lose situation for the Suns, and the only way out if it is to obliterate the Spurs like they did to Atlanta. In other words, let's make like it's Game 2 in the 2006-07 playoffs.
According to Paul Coro's blog, it sounds like Boris Diaw will get another starting nod with Grant Hill coming off the bench. The Spurs shook up their starting lineup a little too in the last game, starting Manu Ginobili and bringing Michael Finley off the bench. I haven't seen anything official, but I'll take a wild guess that Manu's 29 points, 7 assists, and 10-of-18 shooting for that game means he'll probably be on the floor to start this one as well. Pounding the Rock has the view from the Spurs side, including an entertaining take on how to fix their recent struggles.
Update: The Suns have a little extra motivation, as if they needed any. They have been officially snubbed by Damon Stoudamire in favor of the Spurs. Also, forgot to mention earlier that Brent Barry is out with injury (thanks for the reminder, Hawk42).
Update #3: Sorry, everyone, but no live blogging from me tonight. Instead, I'm going to lean my coughing, sneezing, sniffling self back in the recliner and just enjoy watching until the game is over or the Nyquil kicks in, whichever happens first. We'll also have a special guest doing the recap tonight. Matt from Hardwood Paroxysm (known around here as sunofa) will be providing the postgame commentary in the Diaries after the game. Apologies for the last minute change of plans. Hopefully the Suns have better luck tonight than I'm having.