Spurs advance: San Antonio beats Grizzlies 103-96 in Game 6

Ross Houston
April 28, 2017

Kawhi Leonard scored 29 points, and the San Antonio Spurs advanced to the second round of the Western Conference playoffs by defeating the Memphis Grizzlies, 103-96, on Thursday night at FedExForum.

Heading into Game 6, Memphis will need to bear down defensively. Look for veterans. If 34-year-old veteran Tony Parker can stay healthy and keep pressure on the Houston defense by attacking the basket, he can create open shots for his teammates and make the Spurs offense tough to slow down.

On Tuesday, Mills, the backup point guard, made five 3-pointers - four in the fourth quarter - while finishing with a career-best playoff scoring total.

Leonard had an excellent game - 9-of-16 (3-of-5 triples), six assists, and 28 points - but he was not the totally dominant factor he had previously been.

"I'm exhausted of him", said Grizzlies coach David Fizdale, who faced Ginobili several times during his days as an assistant with the Miami Heat. "The Spurs did what the Spurs do".

Ginobili scored on a layup with 3:23 remaining in the opening period, capping an 11-0 run that put the Spurs up 19-14. Mills mentioned at practice on Monday that the Spurs needed to get the forward some help. That led to 17 second-chance points.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich had something in common with Fizdale. So long as they are in the locker room, the team will consistently compete for playoff berths.

"We don't execute as well as Memphis did", Popovich said. The Memphis Grizzlies have won seven of their last 10 home games.

According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, the Spurs are the favorite in tonight's game, as they are getting odds of -4 points on the road against the Grizzlies.

James Ennis III, the primary defender against Leonard, led Memphis with 11 points in the half, four more than his average per game during the series and the regular season.

His previous highest score was 18 points against the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2014-15 playoffs. He is 47 of 48 at the free-throw line, making his first 42 attempts before missing with 3:53 left in the first quarter of Game 5. He later followed that up with the two assists to Parker to seal the deal. “Many guys my age are in pain, back problems, knee problems, I dont have any of that. "It's not that I read, but I know how my games have been". "And his conditioning is like nothing I've ever seen. He was very determined, motivated and aggressive". He had three games of 30 or more points, including a 43-point effort in a Game 2 victory in San Antonio. "He's just 100 percent professional", Fizdale said. "I thought the fight was in us, I just didn't think the execution was there".

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