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May 2, 2003

Bill Schoening's 20-Second Timeout: Young Spurs Provide Spark

Isn't it ironic that the two Spurs on the floor with the least amount of playoff experience are the two guys who would hit the biggest shots to finally put away those stubborn Phoenix Suns?

At this time last year, Stephen Jackson was at the end of the Spurs bench, relegated to a cheerleading role, and Manu Ginobili was in Italy, still hoping for a contract from the NBA team that owned his rights, the San Antonio Spurs.


Ginobili


Jackson
Here we are a year later, Jackson fights off the painful strained tendon near his right ankle that forced him to miss the second half of game 5...and Ginobili ignores the fact that his shooting was subpar in the series. The two energetic perimeter players sparked a critical 12-2 Spurs run midway through the 4th quarter to set the stage for victory in game 6, and a chance once again to dethrone the Lakers.

Having played his first playoff series, Ginobili now understands what it takes in the postseason. "The intensity is unbelievable," said the 25-year-old Argentine.

So is the pressure, but don't tell Manu and Jack.