SAN ANTONIO – For all the accomplishments the Spurs have had in the history of the franchise, they managed another one Wednesday night with their 97-81 win over the Detroit Pistons.
San Antonio has clinched a playoff birth on March 2, the fastest they have ever reached a postseason berth in franchise history. It’s their 19th straight trip to the playoffs.
As you would expect, some of the Spurs didn't know they clinched a playoff spot and some just shrugged it off because it is more about winning a championship.
"I don't take it for granted but I don't even look at that," said Tony Parker.
"I think we have a bigger picture in mind and I think guys are just focused on that," said LaMarcus Aldridge.
The Pistons gave the Spurs a run for their money in the first half, especially in the second quarter.
San Antonio went on a stretch where they missed six shots in a row and turned it over twice.
Detroit took advantage going on a 12-0 run to take a six point lead with 3:49 left in the quarter.
But the Spurs got things right and finished the quarter with a one point lead going into the locker room, 52-51.
"A little bit rusty in the first half," said Parker who finished the game with 10 points and four assists.
The third quarter was completely different. The Spurs held the Pistons to just 14 points and followed that up in the fourth quarter holding them to 16.
"They made less shots and we made more shots, played better in the second half," Parker said.
"Just guys more active trying to keep guys in front of us not giving them so many back doors, easy shots, competed harder," said Aldridge.
Aldridge scored eight points in the first half and finished the game with 23 and 10 rebounds while Kawhi Leonard was the Spurs leading scorer with 27.
"He has been playing great. I just try and pick my spots out there," Aldridge said.
"They were playing well," Parker said.
It was the first game for Andre Miller in a Spurs uniform and coach Popovich didn't waste much time letting him get his feet wet, he called his number in the third quarter.
"He threw me out there. I didn’t expect it was coming so soon but the opportunity was there. I just try to go in a keep it simple," Miller said.
Miller played nearly eight minutes. He grabbed a couple of rebounds and dished out two assists.
In the meantime Manu Ginobili got a nice ovation during the game when he face flashed on the scoreboard.
After having testicular surgery and missing four weeks he should be back next week ready to go.
Head coach Gregg Popovich was asked after the game if he was “stunned by Manu's recovery time?”
"I am not stunned like a catfish getting hit in the head or anything like that. I am surprised," Popovich said.
The Spurs left for New Orleans after the game to take on the Pelicans Thursday night.
Their next home game will be Saturday night against the Sacramento Kings.