San Antonio Spurs guard Jonathon Simmons (17) denies a shot by Houston Rockets forward Ryan Anderson (3) during the first half of Game 5 of the second round of the Western Conference NBA playoffs at AT&T Center, Tuesday, May 9, 2017, in San Antonio. Houston has to have a victory in Game 6 to keep alive their hopes of reaching the conference finals for the second time in three years.
Get scoring updates and the live box score from Game 6 between the Spurs and Rockets above. It was probably the most fun I've ever had watching basketball, and that's coming from a guy who had no fewer than seven Yao Ming posters on display in 2007.
Reserve point guard Patty Mills, who is filling in for injured starter Tony Parker, said Leonard's potential absence shouldn't alter San Antonio's focus headed into Thursday's matchup at the Toyota Center.
"We're just going to enjoy this one right now until midnight, at least", Danny Green said. The coach felt it was not worth the risk to play him in a non-elimination game. So what would make anyone think San Antonio can win post-Popovich?
D'Antoni says the 7-man rotation stays, so don't expect much different with the Houston approach tonight, but hopefully we end up with a different result.
Another point the Rockets will need to work on is to minimise their turnovers - they finished with 16 for the game and a key steal late in the fourth gave the Spurs the chance to tie up the game and force the overtime. He played limited minutes for the rest of regulation and did not play in overtime. The over has hit in four of the last six meetings between the Rockets and Spurs, the over is 8-1 in the Spurs last nine games and 7-1 in the Spurs last eight road games. Gasol has deterred the Rockets at the rim, and Aldridge nearly single-handedly restored the value of the midrange shot. Other teams might build winning cultures; the Spurs have constructed the Great Pyramids of winning.
The Houston Rockets were going to go to battle against the Spurs in one of the best game 7s in recent memory. They obviously don't want the series to go seven games, where anything can happen on any given night, especially against a Rockets team with so many streaky shooters. In two of his final three All-Star seasons he averaged 11 shots per game.