Stephen Jackson’s 3-pointer helped kick-start a late 8-2 run that pulled the Spurs within 52-44 at the half of Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals. (Photo by Jerry Lara/Express-News)
The Spurs struggled through one of their worst offensive halves of the season as they trail Oklahoma City 52-44 at halftime of Game 5 at the AT&T Center.
Their offense has sputtered as they were held scoreless for more than 4½ late in the first half before Stephen Jackson hit a 3-pointer. during the drought, they missed 11 straight shots and committed two turnovers.
The Spurs finished the half shooting at 39.5 percent from the field and 11 turnovers the Thunder turned into 14 points. San Antonio was unable to produce a point from five Oklahoma City turnovers.
That shot sparked an 8-2 run to close the half after the Spurs trailed 50-36 with 2:08 left on a three-point play by James Harden.
The Thunder’s lead is even more remarkable considering that NBA leading scorer Kevin Durant has been limited to five points on 1-for-6 shooting.
Russell Westbrook leads Oklahoma City with 10 points and seven assists and Serge Ibaka and Harden have scored seven points apiece.
Manu Ginobili leads the Spurs with 14 poinots, five rebounds and five assists. Tony Parker has added nine and Jackson has seven.
The Thunder overcame some early struggles as they missed their first seven shots from the field. but they rebounded to hit eight of their next 10 to take the lead late in the first quarter.
Their early flurry came without much help from Durant, who didn’t get a shot in the second quarter.
But even without him, the Thunder erupted on a 16-4 run capped by two foul shots by Derek Fisher giving them a 24-19 lead with 1:17 left in the first quarter.
The Spurs are in grave danger in this one. Their sputtering offense has been unlike anything we’ve seen during the second half of the season.
Ginobili needs some help. they need to protect the ball better.
It will be a huge challenge to pull things together for the second half.