This has easily been the worst postseason I've seen in 15 years of watching basketball. Last night, was a rare occurence, a close game that was a nail bitter, something we haven't seen very often this postseason. This game for one night made you forget the NBA postseason has been an absolute atrocity. I bet a lot of you actually didn't even bother to watch due to how bad the NBA playoffs have been. Not this game, though, this game was impressive, it was vintage Spurs vs the explosive Rockets, and it was 53 minutes of great basketball.
The game was neck and neck throughout, at no point did either side have a commanding lead. Trading bucket for buckets all game long, Harden vs Kawhi, who would win the battle of best superstar on the floor. Game essentially looked like it'd come down to whoever had the last shot. Then, Kawhi Leonard goes down with a knee injury with about 8 minutes to go in the 4th quarter. All Spurs fans lose hope, the Rockets are going to win this game, and then they have home court advantage in game 6 as well. The Spurs looked like they were gonna be dead. All the sudden Manu Ginobili, the last one remaining from the old big 3 Spurs, no Parker, no Duncan, and somehow 40 year old Manu Ginobili carries the Spurs. In the 4th quarter he hit a couple of big shots to keep them alive. At the end of regulation, Patty Mills, put up a three for the win, he hit it, but after a review it showed he released it too late.
In OT the Spurs had a 3 point lead, even without Kawhi they were battling tough, willing themselves to a heroic effort. Rockets had one last chance to tie it up, everyone in the building knew who'd be taking the shot. The ball is inbounded to Harden, he sets up, goes to fire off a wide open shot, and then Manu Ginobili comes from behind blocking the shit out of the shot, and the Spurs hold onto win. Manu Ginobili is the hero of the game, after looking so old all season he turned back the clock in this playoff game as he has done so many times before. Ginobili had 12 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists, and one game winning block. Great game for him, and not to mention he finished with a +/_ of +8 the best of any player on the court.
Hopefully, we get more this action in game 6. It was so nice to finally see a good basketball game for once this postseason. If Kawhi comes back healthy, Spurs shouldn't have a problem closing this series out since they get game 7 at home if they are to lose game 6 on the road. Harden played good in game 5, but he didn't play outstanding. Outstanding is what it takes to win the big playoff games and Harden needs to learn that. Rockets can still win this series, they just need their superstar to be a superstar.