Golden State Warriors: 5 Keys to Beating the San Antonio Spurs

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May 8, 2013; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili (20) gets pressure from Golden State Warriors forward Carl Landry (7) and Draymond Green (23) during the second half in game two of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at the AT

Who knew?

The Golden State Warriors weren’t even supposed to make the playoffs this year, much less overpower the Denver Nuggets in Round 1 with their lone All-Star David Lee on the bench. Now, they’re tied 1-1 in a second-round series after beating the San Antonio Spurs on the road for the first time since Latrell Spreewell wore blue and gold.

The Warriors are a really good, sometimes great, sometimes transcendently weird basketball team that only plays better in front of Oakland’s overjoyed home crowd. The win in San Antonio will no doubt help the young team’s confidence coming back to their court, where they went 28-13 this season.

Of course, San Antonio has been and always will be a dangerous team. Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili will not be phased by the deafening roar of Oracle Arena, and I’m still not convinced that Gregg Popovich isn’t just an older version of Noah Emmerich’s stone cold special agent from “The Americans”.

To win, the Warriors will need to keep their composure and maintain the pace they played for 7.5 quarters in San Antonio. Here are a few factors that will contribute: