Cincinnati.com
National Basketball Association
Preview
San Antonio at New Orleans
When: 8:00 PM ET, Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Where: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, Louisiana

Some of the drama was taken out of Wednesday's meeting when the San Antonio Spurs and the New Orleans Pelicans each clinched a playoff berth on Monday, but that doesn't mean the regular season finale is meaningless. The Pelicans and the Spurs will be fighting for seeding in the crowded Western Conference when they meet in New Orleans on Wednesday.

Both teams could finish as high as fourth in the West with a win and some help on the season's final day. “It’s a good feeling, but we know we’re not done," Pelicans All-Star forward Anthony Davis told reporters after a 113-100 victory at the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday clinched the playoff spot. "Our goal wasn’t just to get here, but to make some noise, so we’ve got another one Wednesday, which will be a good one, our last home, and then see where we’re seeded and try to go win some series." The Spurs clinched their 21st consecutive postseason appearance with a win over the Sacramento Kings on Monday and are heading to the playoffs despite MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard playing in just nine games this season. "It's like we've said in any other year: We want to be the best team we can be come playoff time," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich told reporters. "I think at this point, other than our road play, we've gotten to the point where we know our team pretty well. We're as good as we can get. We've got a lot of guys that have really progressed. ... Hopefully we'll finish it the right way."

TV: 8 p.m. ET, FS Southwest (San Antonio), FS New Orleans

ABOUT THE SPURS (47-34): San Antonio's rash of injuries forced the team to lean harder on 40-year-old guard Manu Ginobili, and he responded with 17 points in each of the last two games. "Sometimes you have got to adjust your goals relative to your potential and the way you have been playing, the way the season is going," Ginobili told reporters. "We have to be realistic. Maybe we are not the favorites this year, or it was not going to be a 60-win season like the previous ones. ... The goal was to make the playoffs. Once we clinched, then we could talk about standings. The way the West is this year, it's crazy. Everything is so clogged, so tight that at this point, we are happy to have it clinched." LaMarcus Aldridge is the backbone of the team with Leonard out and he is averaging 25.7 points 10.8 rebounds over the last six games.

ABOUT THE PELICANS (47-34): New Orleans was left for dead when All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins went down with a season-ending Achilles injury at the end of January but instead surged behind Davis and a strong cast of role players. "We’re excited. We've done a good job of just hanging in," Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry told reporters. "We’ve had some ups and downs along the way. Obviously losing DeMarcus was a huge, huge blow for us. ... (Davis) did a great job of stepping up for our team, and Jrue (Holiday). ... We’re looking forward to playing in the playoffs." Davis led the way with 28 points in Monday's clinching victory.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Spurs SF Rudy Gay scored in double figures in each of the last five games and is averaging 16.4 points on 56.1 percent shooting in that span.

2. Pelicans SG Ian Clark (ankle) returned from a two-game absence on Monday and scored 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting.

3. New Orleans took the first two meetings this season but lost at San Antonio 98-93 in the most recent matchup on March 15.

PREDICTION: Pelicans 108, Spurs 105
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
San Antonio 47-34 W2 33-8 14-26 2-4 45-30 9-6 29-22
New Orleans 47-34 W4 23-17 24-17 4-4 43-30 8-7 26-25
Last Meeting
San Antonio New Orleans
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
3/15/18 NO 93 SA 98 98 52 37.4 93 53 40.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
San Antonio L. Aldridge 25 40.7 3
New Orleans J. Holiday 24 39.1 4
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
San Antonio D. Murray 12 3 9
New Orleans A. Davis 14 5 9
Assists Player  
San Antonio K. Anderson 4
New Orleans J. Holiday 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
San Antonio L. Aldridge 1814 51.4 342
New Orleans A. Davis 2170 53.0 530
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
San Antonio L. Aldridge 656 250 406
New Orleans A. Davis 852 195 657
Assists Player  
San Antonio P. Gasol 248
New Orleans R. Rondo 527
Quickchart Matchup
San Antonio San Antonio Off vs  New Orleans New Orleans Defense
San Antonio Off vs New Orleans - Points For 102.8 Points For
San Antonio Off vs New Orleans - Points Against 110.6 Points Against
San Antonio - FG% 45.8 FG%
New Orleans - FG% 45.5 FG%
San Antonio - Reb 44.3 Reb
New Orleans - Reb 45.6 Reb
New Orleans New Orleans Off vs  San Antonio San Antonio Defense
New Orleans Off vs San Antonio - Points For 111.6 Points For
New Orleans Off vs San Antonio - Points Against 99.6 Points Against
New Orleans - FG% 48.2 FG%
San Antonio - FG% 45.1 FG%
New Orleans - Reb 44.3 Reb
San Antonio - Reb 42.4 Reb