San Antonio Spurs Defeat Los Angeles Clippers, Tim Duncan Surpasses John Havlicek

San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan only scored nine points against the Los Angeles Clippers, but he created history with those points. According to ESPN, Duncan now has a career scoring total of 26,399. That moves him to 14th all time in the NBA, while Boston Celtics legend John Havlicek moves down to 15th. Despite the pedestrian production from Duncan, the Spurs were able to defeat Chris Paul and the Clippers by a score of 108 to 87.

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich wants to keep the minutes low for Tim Duncan. He wants his star center to be at full speed when the NBA Playoffs roll around in a couple of weeks. Against the Los Angeles Clippers, Duncan was only needed for 22 minutes. That was enough time to tally up six points, seven rebounds, and two assists. Tim has never really been a guy that’s concerned about stats, so he was happy to go home with the victory.

San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard

Kawhi Leonard was the guy that the San Antonio Spurs relied on to defeat the Los Angeles Clippers. That makes a lot of sense, because he’s been pegged as their new franchise player, carrying the torch passed to him by Tim Duncan. Leonard had quite the all-around game against the Clippers. He scored 20 points, grabbed five rebounds, handed out four assists, and stole the ball three times, which was enough to help the Spurs beat a team they might meet in the NBA Playoffs.

To defeat the Los Angeles Clippers, Kawhi Leonard received plenty of support from Danny Green and LaMarcus Aldridge. The San Antonio Spurs starting shooting guard scored 12 points, all of which were from beyond the three-point line. Green shot very efficiently, missing only one of his five shots from the perimeter. Aldridge, who starts at power forward for the Spurs, had 17 points, six rebounds, two assists, and two steals in 30 minutes of playing time.

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich

Gregg Popovich did a good job of spreading the minutes. Eleven players received double-digit minutes against the Los Angeles Clippers. Patty Mills and Manu Ginobili provided solid contributions from the bench. Mills received 23 minutes of playing time, while Ginobili was on the court for 16 minutes. They combined for 28 points and eight assists. That easily made up for the reduced production from Tim Duncan.

To load up for the NBA Playoffs, the San Antonio Spurs picked up two veteran guards that were recently bought out by the Minnesota Timberwolves. Andre Miller only played four minutes against the Los Angeles Clippers, as he was playing behind Tony Parker and Patty Mills. Kevin Martin received 12 minutes of playing time behind Danny Green and Manu Ginobili, which should be enough time to satiate the veteran guard looking to win his first NBA Championship.

Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul Pierce

Chris Paul had 22 points and eight assists. Deandre Jordan had 16 points and 14 rebounds. Both were excellent contributions, but it was not enough to help the Los Angeles Clippers keep up with the San Antonio Spurs. JJ Redick and Jeff Green combined for 29 points, and even that was not enough to get the victory. The team could have used Paul Pierce, who missed the game because of an injury to his right toe.

The victory enabled the San Antonio Spurs to quietly be just three wins behind than the heavily hyped Golden State Warriors. Gaining home court advantage throughout the NBA Playoffs would be nice, but it’s not a priority for Gregg Popovich. The loss hurts the Los Angeles Clippers and their quest to take the third seed in the Western Conference from the Oklahoma City Thunder, which would enable them to avoid the Warriors until the conference finals.

[Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images]