Duncan hits game-winner to push Spurs past Hawks
Photo Credit: Rafael Gutierrez/The Paisano
The San Antonio Spurs (15-3) defeated the Atlanta Hawks (9-10) 102-100, at the AT&T Center on Monday, December. 2. Fans were on the edge of their seats as Tim Duncan hit a game-winning jump shot with .04 seconds left on the clock.
Hawks guard Jeff Teague had tied the game right before on a 3-pointer that knotted the game at 100, leaving the four seconds that the Spurs needed to run Duncan off of a screen and catch a Manu Ginobili pass in stride.
Duncan played exceptionally well, racking up 23 points and a season-high 21 rebounds.
“He played really well tonight, but he has done well the past few games,” Ginobili said of Duncan’s performance. “You can see him feeling better and more comfortable with his shot.”
Boris Diaw added 16 points off the bench. Diaw had been recovering from a dislocated left middle finger and was a game-time decision.
“I didn’t expect Boris to be able to do what he did tonight,” stated Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich. “I didn’t even know if I was going to play him, but he said he was fine. He certainly played a fine game for us.”
Atlanta Hawks Head Coach Mike Budenholzer gave his former team a run for their money as he proved to know Coach Popovich’s playing and coaching methods all too well.
Both coaches were colleagues for many years, which contributed to Atlanta’s competitive edge against the number one team in the NBA Southwest Division.
“It was a heck of an NBA basketball game,” said Budenholzer. “I’m proud of our guys. It was a very good effort.”
The Spurs will attempt to hold their lead in the Southwest Division as they match up against the Minnesota Timberwolves in Mexico City on Wednesday, Dec. 4.