SAN ANTONIO — Those old ghosts are swirling around a Mike D’Antoni team, just when it seemed like the modern NBA game was ready to validate all he had done to help revolutionize it. Those same criticisms of James Harden‘s “lazy” style of play are back, built on a late-game stagnation that drove his team into a 3-2 hole. When everything that can go wrong does, and you still had an opportunity to win, it only makes the defeat that much colder.
The Rockets lost to the Spurs 110-107 in overtime Tuesday night as the Spurs took a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven second-round series. It was a tough, ugly, close, tooth-and-nail affair that saw 14 lead changes and six ties. The two teams combined to miss — not shoot, miss — 55 3-pointers. Harden had nine turnovers. The Spurs had just 19 second-chance points on 18 offensive rebounds. And yet both teams found ways to respond every time the other would push them to the limit or make a run.
It was a close game, one that Manu Ginobili said was like a coin flip, either team could have won.