The San Antonio Spurs entered Game 3 against the Los Angeles Lakers with a 2-0 lead on April 27. By the time the final horn rang out, the Spurs had a commanding 3-0 lead on the Lakers. The Spurs beat the Lakers, 120-89. The 31-point loss represents the Lakers worst home playoff loss in franchise history.
“Their focus has been very good. Everything we do, in this series particular series, starts with playing post defense and rebounding the basketball. I think that they have kept that focus pretty well. They’re doing the best job that they can against Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard; they’re good covers, very talented big people and everybody else to help out big guys because we need to cover them,” said Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich.
For the Spurs, the game started with stout defense. The Spurs held the Lakers to 43.2 percent from the field, 20 percent from 3-point land, and 60 percent from the free-throw line. However, the Lakers played with a depleted lineup. Kobe Bryant was out with a torn Achilles tendon, Steve Nash was out with a pulled hamstring, Steve Blake with an injured abdomen, and Jodie Meeks was out with a sprained wrist.
“I can understand the frustration but they gave everything they have. Times are tough right now. Pau and Dwight played as hard as they could play. They were trying the best that they could do. Nobody likes it and nobody’s happy, but I don’t fault the effort of the guys or the will they want to do it,” said Los Angeles Lakers Head Coach Mike D’Antoni.
Tim Duncan put on a Hollywood worthy performance. He scored 26 points and grabbed 9 rebounds.
“I’m feeling healthy; I’m feeling good, and I got a rhythm going early. I had not played that well coming into the third quarter, and I really tried to get some shots to fall early on there, and I got rhythm going there. The whole night turned out well for me,” said Duncan.
Everything didn’t go the Spurs way though: Tiago Splitter left the game with an ankle injury.
“It’s an ankle sprain. They looked at it, and it isn’t broken,” said Popovich.
The Spurs will look to sweep the Lakers on April 28 in the Staple Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.