The San Antonio Spurs have never been the most thrilling of teams, but they are among the most reliable for basketball betting. They have reached the NBA playoffs 19 years in a row and gone all the way five times. And that’s all the more impressive considering that they have never had a charismatic leader, instead relying on personality black holes David Robinson in the past, and Tim Duncan up to the present day. And the present version of the Spurs is perhaps the best – and as always, championship material.
The Grizzlies are the sportsbook underdogs with NBA playoffs odds at +550, and that’s reflected on the court thanks to an injury-plagued roster. The Spurs beat Memphis like a redheaded stepchild on Game 2, winning 94-68 and taking a 2-0 series lead – and there was much rejoicing. They're dealing with the Grizzlies by playing the same type of basketball that they have always played. Unimaginative? Maybe. Boring? Definitely. Effective? Definitely. San Antonio plays consistent basketball while running opponents off the court at the same time. They have several different approaches to win games, and are expected to be a tough nut for the Golden State Warriors to crack in the Western Conference Finals.
Against the Grizzlies, the Spurs have displayed the ability to grind as well as to throw up points in bunches. They finished the first quarter on a 9-0 run. Then, after allowing the Grizzlies to shorten the difference to six points in the second quarter, they went off on a 17-5 run. From that point on, the Spurs keep extending the lead with scoring outbursts. Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge and Tim Duncan always deliver, but the Spurs also have high-energy scorers like secret weapon Patty Mills, who led the San Antonio in scoring with 16 points on Tuesday coming off the bench. Poking the bear? More like bear baiting. Sadly, the Grizzlies are all but an afterthought.
The Spurs under Tim Duncan have always been about as entertaining as watching paint dry even to their own fans – the Admiral himself was yawning his balding head off during game 2 –, but they were and are fun for people who put their basketball betting money on them. They have retained the defensive adroitness that defined then in the early 2000s, and have added scoring power to their arsenal. The potential for a series between the Spurs and the Warriors is very exciting. The Spurs appear to have the ability to keep up with the Warriors’ pace, but they have been more successful when slowing the Warriors down to their level. On the other hand, the Warriors can grind as hard as the Spurs.