Last season, with the top seed in the Western Conference locked up, San Antonio's Manu Ginobli got hurt in what was essentially a meaningless regular season game and missed Game 1 of the playoffs. The Spurs lost that game to Memphis and the eighth seeded Grizzlies went on to win the series 4-2.
against Phoenix with little to nothing to play – except the top record in the league and home court throughout the playoffs. According to Sports Options, is looks as if Popovich won't risk another snafu with Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobli and Tony Parker all listed as "doubtful" due to rest. The Suns meanwhile are unlikely to put much emphasis on this game after being officially eliminated from the postseason following last night's loss at Utah.
“Everybody knew it was over,” Popovich said, reflecting on the memory. “It was like a year wasted, in a sense.”
“It’s a huge balancing act,” forward Matt Bonner said, “between staying in rhythm, keeping guys sharp and not risking injury.”
“We don’t want to lay an egg,” forward Stephen Jackson said. “We want to keep our rhythm and continue what we’ve been doing. If coaches rest guys, it will give other guys an opportunity.”