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Manu Ginobili more likely to repeat Game 6 than Game 5 for Spurs

Jun 20, 2013, 5:51 PM EDT

Manu Ginobili

Manu Ginobili struggled through Games 1 -4, surged in Game 5 and reverted to playing poorly in Game 6.

Has Ginobili, a multi-time All-Star and multi-time All-NBA third teamer, become the most confounding player of the 2013 NBA Finals? Not at all. In fact, his play can be pretty easily explained.

He’s old.

At 35, Ginobili can no longer regularly break down defenses like he once could. He can no longer pounce defensively to get steals like he once could. He can no longer turn the corner on pick-and-rolls to find passing lanes how like he once could. That’s no knock to Ginobili. It’s just what to players as they inevitably age.

Tony Parker is younger than Ginobili, so he’s held up relatively well. Tim Duncan is older, and though he has also declined, his game is coming from a higher peak. Ginobili had less margin for error.

The Spurs know they can no longer count on Ginobili to the degree they once did, which is why his regular-season and post-season minutes per game the last two years have slipped to their lowest totals since his rookie year.

Ginobili is still certainly capable of playing elite levels, as he did with 24 points and 10 assists in Game 5. But those types of performances are becoming increasingly rare for him.

Maybe Ginobili will play great again in Game 7 tonight. It’s not impossible or even close to impossible. But it’s also unlikely.

  1. pmx8411 - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    perks of playing at HOME

  2. htownred34 - Jun 20, 2013 at 6:40 PM

    He has got to stop trying to be the playmaker he once was and let Parker get him good shots that can boost his confidence, he was a to machine last game 8 turnovers isn’t going to cut it…

  3. jadaruler - Jun 20, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    Maybe, its just wishful thinking, but I think both big 3s show up tonight. Its the only thing that hasn’t happened yet.

    Give me 99-94 Heat.

  4. sportsnut101 - Jun 20, 2013 at 8:42 PM

    Manu just needs to take it easy push it when it’s there n hold back when it’s not.

    They need for Neal to score off the bench. Danny green did u forget there was a game 6. U let bosh backup his talk on u n bosh has sucked all yr

    If heat win I won’t watch post game coverage
    If spurs win I will watch post game coverage

    Why is this game starting at 9pm 8pm should start. Stop favoring west coast

  5. kb2408 - Jun 20, 2013 at 9:38 PM

    He doesn’t have to duplicate game 5. How about not turning the ball over eight times and giving the Spurs half the production he gave them in game 5 (12 pts., 5-6 assists).

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