The second part of the 14th installment from the "best of" series. Much more stellar passing from Splitter.
Be sure to check out the first 13 parts of the series if you missed some of them the first time around.
Here's part 1 if you missed it.
Duncan and Ginobili have been running this inbound give-and-go for a long time. It works just as well with Splits in Timmy's place. Manu inbounds the ball, fakes right and makes for the hoop as Tiago sets the Argentine up with a fantastic pass.
What a trio of bigs the Spurs have. The Spurs are in their jumbo package and the three bigs team up as Boris and Tiago run the give-and-go while Duncan sets a big screen to free Diaw. Splitter places a nice lob and the two of them connect with a pretty alley-oop layup.
From the top of the arc Sparkles puts another beautiful bounce-pass on the money to Patty Mills, who hangs in the air, works the ball out of Dirk's reach, and gets a tricky reverse layup to drop. It was a lot of fun to watch Tiago shut up his detractors with his excellent play. This is such a smooth play.
Danny dribbles out of the corner, but Durant doesn't give him any space so Green gives it up to Tiago at the top of the key. Tim Duncan cuts, and Splitter even makes it look easy as he places the ball in just about the ideal place - keeping it out of Jackson's reach and in a place that Tim can finish quickly without having to bring the ball down. How good has Tiago been this postseason?
Tiago has really become great at setting Duncan up for scores as they've become comfortable being on the floor at the same time. Here's a touch bouncer that leads to a Duncan one-hand flush in the Spurs' rout of the Heat in early March. Fun fact: The Spurs, even after this game that the Spurs won 111-87, were a long 10-1 to win the championship. It was their fifth win during the 19-game win streak and by the time the streak ended the Spurs were down to 4-1.
Manu and Splitter run the high pick-and-roll with Manu making the first of two nice bounce passes before Boris Diaw gets an and-one to go. Great awareness from Tiago who takes a dribble before splitting two defenders and getting the big Frenchman the ball. Plus, Splitter with the double fist pump.
This is such a slick behind-the-back bounce-pass that Tiago delivers to the cutting Danny Green. Very nice.
Check out Splitter as he patiently waits for Tony Parker to cut into the lane where he hits the Wee Frenchman with a sweet bouncer. I love how closely Dirk is playing the Brazilian at the elbow. That's a lot of respect for a guy that I think hit five shots all year outside of the paint. Tiago had it going on during the game, but especially so during the important and deciding final quarter. Tony converts the layup and Cuban doesn't like it.
Dallas likes to front Duncan, but with Splitter up high he's going to get Timmy the ball. Here he is with a great lob after Duncan seals off Brandon Wright. Tim gets the ball to drop even with Wright crashing into him with a pretty nice flip shot behind his head.
Splitter puts it all together here. He gets the ball from Tony in the middle of the paint and finds Duncan in traffic with a touch-bounce-pass. How many centers are there in the league that can make that pass? Maybe the Gasols and Noah. That might be the list. I can't wait to see more next season.
The next installment will be out soon.
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- The sweetest part of the Spurs' 5th title, and Kawhi Leonard's wild side
- The Spurs extending Leonard is all tied up with whether Duncan and Ginobili retire
- Kawhi Leonard has priorities and trophy-sitting isn't one of them
- Sports & Recreation
- Tony Parker
- Tiago Splitter
- Tim Duncan
- Boris Diaw
- Kawhi Leonard