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May 20, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan (21) reacts during game four of the Western Conference semifinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center. The Spurs defeated the Clippers 102-99 to win the series 4-0. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

Los Angeles Clippers Go Down in Valiant Effort, Spurs Advance

At the end of this series, it was clearly apparent who the better team was, and the team that was executing their game plan. Even when the Clippers had a lead late in the 4th quarter, you could tell that they were fighting to hang on to the win based only on the shot selection. The Spurs were getting whatever shot that they wanted within their game-plan, either Tim Duncan/Tiago Splitter points in the paint, corner threees, or Tony Parker floaters in the lane.

The Clippers, on the other hand, were improvising for everything. Each play would be one of the point guards(Eric Bledsoe or Chris Paul) driving around the lane looking for space for a floater or dishing a pass to one of their shooters. The Clippers don’t always know where everybody on the court is going to be however, and the Spurs do. That is how they break you down; if they see 1 man on defense rotate late to their defender, then they kick they ball to the open man, spread the floor, and keep the ball moving until they get a wide open shot. They look like the Dallas Mavericks of last year, but with a lot more talent and depth.

It’s a shame that we didn’t get to see this series with a healthy Blake Griffin and Chris Paul, but the ultimate result probably would have been the same. The series probably would not have been a sweep, and may even have gone 6 games, but the Spurs were going to win this series, because they are playing the best basketball in the NBA. They have not lost a game since early April, and I fully expect them(barring injury) to win the last game of the season.

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Tags: Blake Griffin Chris Paul

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