Okay, Oklahoma forward Blake Griffin will not match up one-on-one against Davidson point guard Stephen Curry in their teams’ showdown Tuesday night in Normon, Oklahoma. But this contest between two Top 21 teams is an absolute early season highlight.
Curry, who has switched over to the play-maker spot for No. 21 Davidson, torched James Madison for 33 points and nine assists in a 99-64 victory in Monday’s first round NIT Season Tip-Off in Norman.
And sophomore Griffin – like Curry a preseason All-American – collected 20 points, 19 rebounds and six steals in No. 12 Oklahoma’s 94-53 rout over Mississippi Valley State.
Now the two teams go at it on Tuesday and basketball fans get the real treat of seeing two future stars in action.
Taking a look at the NBA on Monday night, it’s really hard to believe that the San Antonio Spurs have won four of their last five games to even their record at 5-5, especially when you look at their starting lineup.
With Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili both out with left ankle injuries, Tim Duncan is leading the Spurs in scoring, rebounding, assists and blocks. The real god-send, however, has been Roger Mason. The off-season pickup has filled in for Ginobili and scored 21 points including three three-pointers. Mason has hit 24 long balls in 10 games this season.
The other big helper has been the ageless Michael Finley. The 35-year-old has scored at least 14 points four times in the last five games with 12 three-pointers and at least 30 minutes played four times.
And Mason and Finley stepping things up have been crucial as San Antonio are struggling to find production from the rest of the bunch. In the five-game strecth, only four players have managed at least 10 points – two of them twice.
With that lack of production, the Spurs have been winning games the ugly way – defensively, giving up just 81.6 points per game while scoring just 84.6.
One just has to wonder how long that strategy can go well.
Just one quick baseball note, the Chicago Cubs have been picked by the New York Yankees to open the new Yankee Stadium with a pair of exhibition games on April 3 and 4.