The NBA has launched the schedule for the second half of the 2020-21 NBA season, and it’s going to be a whirlwind for the San Antonio Spurs, who’ve 5 make-up video games squeezed in that had been postponed within the first half because of COVID-19 protocols. After a house sport towards the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder on March 4, the Spurs will get 5 days off earlier than heading to Dallas to kick off the second half of the season towards the Mavericks on March 10. The common season will finish with a mini-series at residence towards the Phoenix Suns on Might 15/16, which if the standings stay roughly the identical as at the moment might be essential to each groups. (Possibly the league is aware of that based mostly on the TBD standing for the time?)
Right here is the schedule in it’s entirety, plus some observations beneath:
The second half of the schedule will function 40 video games throughout 68 days. It goes with out saying that’s lots of basketball crammed into a comparatively small period of time, and in consequence, the Spurs can have 11 back-to-backs crammed in — tied with the Grizzlies for many within the league — as effectively by no means greater than a single day’s relaxation. It’s a very good factor this group is comparatively younger and deep, and they need to proceed to have the ability to unfold minutes round to maintain gamers as contemporary as doable.
If it wasn’t already apparent that the NBA is attempting to attenuate the overall variety of journeys groups should make, the Spurs will play six of their first seven on the street (together with two Rodeo Highway Journey make-up video games in Detroit and Cleveland), adopted by a more-than-likely franchise excessive of NINE straight video games at residence. After that, the vast majority of their outings can be away, with seven of eight on the street subsequent, two at residence, ten of the following twelve on the street, and the ultimate two video games at residence. Right here’s to hoping the Spurs’ profitable methods on the street proceed, contemplating that’s the place 23 of their closing 40 video games can be.
One factor that has given the Spurs points this season is these little miniseries, the place the identical groups play one another in the identical venue for consecutive video games. The Spurs have gone 3-7 in these video games to date this season, they usually’ll need to do higher than that with 5 extra collection developing, together with that aforementioned, probably vital one towards the Suns to shut the season.
This would be the 4th hardest schedule within the league with an opponent win-percentage of .519. (Solely the Rockets, Timberwolves and Magic have it tougher.) 21 video games will come towards groups at the moment at .500 or above, plus 5 extra towards at the moment playoff-bound groups within the East. Probably the most troublesome stretch will doubtless be from April 7 by 19, when the Spurs journey to Denver (twice), Dallas, Orlando, Toronto (at the moment enjoying in Tampa Bay), return residence for the Path Blazers, after which return on the street to Phoenix and Indiana. There’s different robust stretches, however that is essentially the most prolonged on.
The following 5 video games earlier than the All-Star break could also be a bit hazy because the Spurs face loads of roster uncertainty, however hopefully everybody can be wholesome and able to go heading into what can be a doozy of a second half of the season. It received’t be straightforward, however this group is preventing tooth-and-nail to begin a brand new playoff streak and keep away from turn into the primary in franchise historical past to overlook the playoffs in consecutive years. I imagine they’ll do it. Go Spurs Go!
Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my [email protected] 1-800-268-7116