Preview: San Antonio Spurs vs. New Orleans Pelicans

The San Antonio Spurs will try to make it two wins in a row on Sunday when they go up against the New Orleans Pelicans. Last time out, the Spurs defeated the Utah Jazz 119-111 in what was essentially a must-win game with the NBA playoffs in mind.

Against the Pelicans, San Antonio has another must-win game on their hands. While they won’t be eliminated with a loss, it’d be really, really difficult for the Spurs to make the postseason if they lose on Sunday.

Prior to the restart, it looked to me like the Spurs would need to go 6-2 to give themselves a shot of making the playoffs. The good guys are currently 3-2 and, as it turns out, it still looks like they’ll need to hit that 6-2 mark to make it.

With the Portland Trail Blazers playing their best ball of the season in the restart, the Phoenix Suns undefeated at 5-0 and the Memphis Grizzlies doing just enough to stay afloat, the Spurs aren’t getting much help. They need wins.

The game against New Orleans will probably be the easiest game the Spurs play the rest of the way. The Pelicans are 2-3 in the restart, with their two wins coming against underwhelming competition (the Grizzlies and the Washington Wizards).

San Antonio Spurs Injury Report

Bryn Forbes is once again out for the Spurs. Tyler Zeller, who missed last game with an injury, is also out.

With Forbes sidelined, head coach Gregg Popovich has gone with a combination of Patty Mills and Marco Belinelli in his place. Against the Jazz, it was Belinelli’s turn.

Zeller was playing the role of the third string center. With Drew Eubanks locking up the backup center role and Rudy Gay also playing minutes at center, it’s unlikely that Zeller’s role will come into play the rest of the way. If it does, expect Chimezie Metu to get the nod.

Zion Williamson Will Play for the Pelicans

Zion Williamson sat out the last game for the Pelicans. It was the second game of a back-to-back for New Orleans and they obviously don’t want to push their 20-year-old rookie too hard.

For the season, Williamson is averaging 22.4 points and 6.2 rebounds in 27.9 minutes per game. While he has dealt with some injuries, the number one overall pick of the 2019 NBA Draft has successfully lived up to the hype when he has been able to play.