The young Denver Nuggets and the age defying San Antonio Spurs play out this week's NBA Game Of The Week.[caption id="attachment_15155" align="aligncenter" width="615"] Photo Credit: Doug PensingerGetty Images[/caption] This match between San Antonio and Denver could be one of the best of the season. These two teams are flying and dominating the Western Conference. Let's take a look.
GAME TIME & VIEWING OPTIONSTime & Date: Thursday, March 28, 11:30am AEDT Location: AT&T Center, San Antonio. Viewing Info: NBA League Pass (see our TV Guide for full info)
FORM HEADING INDenver Nuggets: 49-22 The Nuggets are a team that no one would want to play come playoff time. Denver are young, dangerous and hungry for success, which spells major trouble for every team in the league. They are the form team in the west and are currently on a massive 15 game winning streak after defeating the Kings in a hard fought battle in Denver. They are close to unbeatable at home, with 32 wins and only 3 losses. San Antonio Spurs: 53-16 San Antonio has been doing the same thing this season, as they have done for years; winning. They have been dominant in the regular season for years now. This season at times it has looked as likely as ever that they might add another championship banner to their collection. The key to their chances is the health of their aging stars. The big question is; will they be able to keep going through a tough playoff series? My guess is; YES.
MATCH UP OF THE NIGHTWith the teams as good as these two are, there are mouth watering match ups everywhere. I've chosen to focus on the hugely important battle at the point guard position, between Ty Lawson and Tony Parker. Tony Parker has only recently returned from injury, but he is looking good and should be primed for a big game against the Nuggets. Parker was having one of the best seasons of his great career before going down with an ankle injury on March 1. He returned on Saturday and looked very happy to be back. Parker put up the impressive numbers of 22 points, 5 assists and 2 rebounds in a close win against Utah. If Parker can continue to build on those numbers and return to his form that he had before the injury, the Spurs will be as tough as anyone in the West. Ty Lawson has been nothing short of fantastic since the start of this year. He was slow at the start of the season, but as soon as 2013 started, so did Lawson. He is great to watch and leads this Denver team the way all Nuggets fans have wanted since seeing him take over in last seasons playoffs against the Lakers. Lawson is one of the quickest players in the league and Parker will need to be ready to run come game time. Lawson has been improving his passing this season and is averaging almost 7 assists per game. Parker and Lawson aren't necessarily known for their defence, but when the going gets tough, both are capable of helping out their team gets some defensive stops.
BENCH BATTLEBoth teams have phenomenal benches. Denver may just have the deepest roster in the league. San Antonio's bench is nothing to be forgotten about also, with many players capable of taking over a game. Let's take a look. San Antonio's best and most experienced bench player is Manu Ginobili. He is now 35 years old, and isn't having the same effect on as many games as he has done in previous seasons. That being said, I have no doubt that he can still figure greatly in who gets out of the west this season and into the Finals. Keep your eyes peeled on Ginobili's ability to pick the pocket of his opponent. What a great season Corey Brewer is having. He fits in perfectly with this Nuggets team and is able to score when called upon. Brewer could start on many NBA teams but is more than happy to do his part for this team coming off the bench. Brewer is a good controller of the ball and is only averaging 1 turnover per game. Aussie, Patty Mills is a good asset for the Spurs. He provides a lot of energy from the sidelines and when he does get his limited playing time, he puts 100% and never backs down from the challenge. In my opinion, San Antonio is under utilising him, with only 10.7 minutes in 54 games this season. I thought as Parker went down earlier this month, Mills was going to see some much earned game time, unfortunately for Mills, Corey Joseph was put into the starting line up. It will be interesting to see if Mills gets on the court in this match, here's hoping he does! JaVale McGee is undoubtedly one of, if not the strangest player currently in the league. Denver fans had hoped he would take the next step this season, but unfortunately for them, he hasn't been able to consistently perform at the level needed. As he has struggled with his game, his playing time as started to fall away. I hope, like many NBA fans, he will start to be known for his consistent play, not his crazy thoughts and emotions.
PREDICTED STARTING LINE UPSSan Antonio Spurs:
- Point guard: Tony Parker
- Shooting guard: Danny Green
- Small forward: Kawhi Leonard
- Power forward: Tim Duncan
- Center: Tiago Splitter
- Point guard: Ty Lawson
- Shooting guard: Andre Iguodala
- Small forward: Danilo Gallinari
- Power forward: Kenneth Faried
- Center: Kosta Koufos