Ins, outs & an interview with Sam Amick about Warriors-Spurs

Another “NBA This Week” show is in the books, and today’s show was a fun one. We were joined by USA Today NBA writer Sam Amick, who is in San Antonio for tonight’s Warriors-Spurs game.

This is Biggest Game of the Year, Part II for both of these teams. The Warriors hammered the Spurs 120-90 at Oracle back on Jan. 25. The Warriors are 62-6 and the Spurs are 58-10. Enough said.

Here’s the link to the “NBA This Week” show on 95.7-FM The Game.

We touched on all the aspects of tonight’s game, so I figured I’d post this format or run-down of today’s show. This is, essentially, what John Dickinson and I come to the table with every Saturday morning:

“THE NBA THIS WEEK,” sponsored by First United Services Credit Union.

10:00-10:15: Warriors coming off another impressive offensive game on Friday – beating the Dallas Mavericks 130-112. Warriors go 22-for-38 from 3-point range. Game over. How much analysis do you need when that happens?

—All sets up tonight’s game in San Antonio: Warriors have lost 32 consecutive games in San Antonio in the regular season.

—How important is tonight’s game in grand scheme of things? Can anything really happen to change your impressions of either team right now? Does San Antonio need this game from psychological perspective? Bigger for which team?

10:15-10:30: The Warriors drilled the Spurs 120-90 on Jan. 25 at Oracle Arena. Was that game an indication of where they are or was it an outlier? Spurs had 25 turnovers, LaMarcus Aldridge was awful, Tony Parker/Manu Ginobili were not good; Kawhi Leonard was just OK. Tim Duncan didn’t play.

—Spurs’ are 34-0 at home this year? Is homecourt advantage still in play.

—In the first game between the teams, the Warriors’ quickness seemed to bother the Spurs. GSW got San Antonio to play faster than it wanted or seemed to.

10:30-10:45: Talking some matchups and/or specifics about game – How does the absence of Andrew Bogut impact game tonight? Can Duncan function against the Warriors’ small lineup? Will Parker match up against Harrison Barnes, like he did two years ago in the playoffs?

—Good sound from Steve Kerr talking about how he should rest all of his players for game tonight. Are the Spurs going to play all their guys tonight? What about the whole idea of resting Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green?

—The Warriors are already going to be missing Andrew Bogut, Andre Iguodala and Festus Ezeli.


10:45-11:00: Around the NBA: The battle for the sixth, seventh and eighth seeds in the Western Conference is a four-team race among Portland, Houston, Dallas and Utah. We’re talking about one of the Warriors’ first-round opponents here so likely worth discussions of strengths and weaknesses against those teams … if there are any.

—Kendrick Perkins’ flagrant foul on Damian Lillard … You don’t see those kinds of fouls anymore very often – and it’s one more reason that the older generation likely keeps criticizing the younger generations – Oscar Robertson, Walt Frazier, etc. They resent there is no more physicality in the NBA.

11:00-11:15: Guest is Sam Amick, national NBA writer for USA Today. He joins us from San Antonio.

—Is this game more important to the Spurs or to the Warriors?

—Is there a way to tell when the Spurs have a sense of urgency?

—Do you think we’ll see the entire Spurs’ team tonight, without Gregg Popovich resting players.

—Who should Leonard guard: Curry, Thompson or Green.

NBA-related … What’s going on with Kevin Durant? Linked to Warriors, then Boston and even San Antonio. … Dwight Howard is also going to be a free agent. Sam talking extensively to Howard about that.

11:15-11:30: React to Sam Amick and what he said. … Or revisit Amick comments and reset theme of show.

11:30-11:45: Is it time to consider Marreese Speights a postseason factor? If nothing else, he’s given Warriors their most explosive player off the bench in the past two or three years. The guy scores in bunches.

—Thompson has been incredible lately. When he gets on stretches like this it begs the question: What he be like if he didn’t play alongside Curry? Would he be better, worse or the same?

11:45-NOON: A look ahead. After tonight’s game the Warriors finish up their trip against the Timberwolves. Game against Minnesota extends stretch in which Warriors will have played 10 games in 16 nights.

–vs. Clippers on Wednesday

–vs. Dallas on Friday.








About Steinmetz

Matt Steinmetz is a veteran San Francisco Bay Area sports journalist. He covered the Golden State Warriors for the Bay Area News Group for more than a decade before becoming a television analyst with Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. Steinmetz can be heard on "Steiny & Guru" on 95.7-FM The Game in San Francisco, from 12-3.
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