The Spurs opened up the 2020 Rodeo Road Trip with a 108-105 loss to the Clippers Monday at the Staples Center; the first game of a back-to-back with LA’s two hoop squads. The loss snapped a two-game win streak with wins against Utah and Charlotte. The team came into its yearly road excursion 22-26 and tied with Portland in the ninth spot in the west; and one and a half games behind Memphis for the eighth and final playoff spot. The Spurs were 5-5 in their last ten games prior to Monday’s loss.
The season may actually hinge on this year’s road trip which includes the Lakers, Trailblazers, Nuggets, Jazz, and the Thunder. The only sub .500 opponent the team will face is Sacramento.
Monday’s road opener showed signs of a good start as the Spurs led by as many as 15 in the first half and up 9 at halftime. Things fell apart quickly however in the second half as the Clippers rallied behind Kawhi Leonard’s 22 points. Paul George nearly had a triple-double adding 19 points, 12 rebounds, and 8 assists.
The Spurs were led by Lamarcus Aldridge’s 27 points and 26 points from DeMar DeRozan. While veteran Patty Mills chipped in 18 points on 6-13 from beyond the arc, the supporting cast however was far from stellar. Young guns DeJounte Murray, Derrick White, and Lonnie Walker IV combined for only eight points and six assists while playing over twenty minutes each.
The Spurs are now 22-27 and are in 10th place in the Western Conference. Following a Memphis win Monday against Detroit, the loss puts them a full two and a half games behind the Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West. If Monday’s loss is an indicator of what’s to come, it’s going to be a very long trip in more ways than one.
Tue, Feb 4 @ LA Lakers (37-11) 9pm TNT
Thu, Feb 6 @ Portland (23-27) 9pm
Sat, Feb 8 @ Sacramento (19-31) 9pm
Mon, Feb 10 @ Denver (34-16) 8pm