San Antonio Spurs at Golden State Warriors (+1, 198)
Spurs lead best-of-seven series 2-1.
The Golden State Warriors were supposed to take control of the Western Conference semifinals when the series returned to Oakland, Calif. Instead, the veteran San Antonio Spurs proved that they were not ready to slow down with a Game 3 win, and will be looking for a commanding 3-1 lead in the series when they visit the Warriors again on Sunday. Golden State star Stephen Curry suffered another left ankle injury at the end of Game 3.
Curry fought off a sprain to that same ankle in the first round, needing an injection at one point to bring down the inflammation. The 25-year-old has had ankle problems throughout his career and is probable Sunday. The Warriors are already dealing with All-Star David Lee’s torn hip flexor, which has limited him to five minutes total since Game 1 of the first round. The Spurs have an injury concern of their own with Tony Parker, who is dealing with a tight calf. Parker, who scored 25 of his 32 points in the first half to put San Antonio in control on Friday, is not expected to miss Game 4.
TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
ABOUT THE SPURS: San Antonio showed some fight early in Game 3, with Tim Duncan shoving Warriors center Andrew Bogut on their way back up the court after one possession. That aggression was evident on the defensive end, where the Spurs bottled up Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson and held Golden State to 39.3 percent shooting. Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green have drawn the unenviable assignments on Thompson and Curry most of the time and limited the “Splash Brothers” to 12-for-37 in Game 3. San Antonio was held in check for all but a few minutes during the first two games of the series and Parker had struggled getting past Thompson’s length on offense. That changed in Game 3, when he was able to get into the lane and went 13-for-23 from the field. The calf injury, which occurred in the fourth quarter, affected his lift and led to some missed shots late, but the Spurs already had the game under control.
ABOUT THE WARRIORS: Curry has easily the most scrutinized ankles in the Bay Area this week, with Bogut’s surgically-repaired ankle a distant second. Curry put up 44 points in the Game 1 loss and took over late to hold off the Spurs in Game 2 while Thompson took over the bulk of the scoring. Curry rolled the ankle planting after coming off a curl late in Game 3 and limped noticeably the rest of the game. X-rays taken after the game came back negative, and he will test it again in pregame warmups on Sunday. “You never really know how it’s going to feel the next day,” Curry told reports. “You just keep with the treatment.” The Warriors have had their depth tested throughout the postseason with Lee on the shelf and have shown an ability to matchup with any alignment the opposition puts out. Golden State started centers Festus Ezeli and Bogut together in Game 3 and have gone small before with Jarrett Jack in the starting lineup and Harrison Barnes pushed to the No. 4 spot.
* Warriors are 11-1 ATS in their last 12 vs. Western Conference foes.
* Under is 7-0 in Spurs’ last seven Sunday games.
* Under is 4-1 in Warriors’ last five overall.
* Warriors are 4-1 ATS in their last five home games.
1. Duncan has averaged 21.7 points and 10 rebounds in the series. He has 141 career postseason double-doubles.
2. The Warriors fell to 3-1 at Oracle Arena in the postseason. They owned a 28-13 record in the building during the regular campaign.
3. San Antonio G Manu Ginobili is 4-for-23 from 3-point range in the series.