(San Antonio, TX) —
The San Antonio Spurs are up to their “old” tricks in taking a 65-55 lead over the Oklahoma City Thunder in game #5 of their NBA Western Conference finals playoff series in the Alamo City. San Antonio jumped out to an early 7-2 lead and fought off the Thunder in the opening quarter. OKC actually went on a 13-3 run to take a 7-point lead on a couple of occasions, but the game ended tied at 32 after the 1st period.
Reggie Jackson had the hot hand for OKC at the outset, scoring 11 quick points by hitting all 5 of his shots.
In the 2nd quarter though, the Thunder offense bogged down, while the Spurs offense heated up – especially from behind the 3-point line. With 36-year old Manu Ginobili coming in off the bench and hitting long shots, 38-year old Tim Duncan started working his way inside for easy buckets.
At one point in the 2nd quarter, the Thunder had scored just 8 points…in 8 minutes of game time. Meanwhile, San Antonio’s bench was lethal and the Spurs jumped their lead up to double-digits.
Russell Westbrook buried a long 3-pointer right before the halftime buzzer to cut the margin to 10 at the break…and he ended the half with 15 points. Kevin Durant warmed up toward the end of the quarter and has 16 at intermission. But Duncan (14 points, 9 rebounds) and Ginobili (14 points) were the big factors in the opening half – just like in the Spurs 122-105 series opening win here last week.
San Antonio’s bench outscored OKC’s reserve 27-9 in the 1st half and surprisingly, Jeremy Lamb did *not* play for the Thunder after a couple of effective games in OKC in the last 2 outings.
Game #6 will be Saturday night, back in Oklahoma City.