The San Antonio Spurs, on the evidence of the first quarter of the season, can’t win on the road and can’t lose at home. (Coming into this game: 12-1 at home, 3-8 away.) It was inevitable, I suppose, that they’d give the Thunder a serious drubbing in Tonytown, and they did: the 107-96 final doesn’t really tell you how bad it was. (It was 88-70 after the third quarter; the Spurs led by as many as 24 on several occasions.)
The Thunder weren’t particularly horrible: they blocked twelve shots, Kevin Durant had yet another double-double (22 points, 11 rebounds), Daequan Cook continued to prove that he can defend, and rookie point guard Reggie Jackson came up with 10 points in 17 minutes.
The problem, of course, can be summed up in two words: “Tony Parker.” TP pretty much wiped out the Thunder tonight: he dropped in 42 points, a season high, and served up nine assists, more than enough to make him the NBA’s all-time dimesman. Add to this Tim Duncan playing like Tim Duncan (13 points, 15 boards), and the unexpectedly easy time Kawhi Leonard had bottling up Kevin Durant, to the extent that holding KD to 22 counts as “bottling up,” and well, it could have been a lot worse than the final suggests.
As it happens, the Spurs are being crowded out of their arena for the next three weeks while the rodeo comes to town: they don’t have another home game until the 29th. They may not go 0-9 during those three weeks, but we can always hope.
Marginal upside for OKC: they don’t have to go back to San Antonio this season; Kendrick Perkins drew not one technical foul.
Speaking of long road trips, the Thunder face five in a row, all against Western Conference rivals. Hang on to your hats, folks.