Spurs will likely have to secure top seed without influential star.
The San Antonio Spurs have revealed that point guard Tony Parker will not travel on a two-game road trip after an MRI scan revealed he has a sprained facet joint on his left side.
The 31-year-old is the Spurs’ leading scorer this season and has played a pivotal role in getting them to a 60-17 record, which in turn sees them sit four-and-a-half games above the Oklahoma City Thunder at the top of the Western Conference.
With six games left in the regular season for the Thunder, if they fail to beat the Sacramento Kings and the Spurs win against the Minnesota Timberwolves, it would be enough for the leaders to lock up home-court advantage throughout the playoffs.
However, they will have to do so without Parker as he has been ruled as day-to-day after initial back spasms were revealed as a sprained facet joint following on MRI scan on Monday.
Manu Ginobili has conceded that he hopes it is merely precautionary and that his team-mate will be back in action prior to the playoffs starting, but he understands the importance of the Spurs having all their players healthy ahead of the post-season.
While San Antonio have won both match-ups against Minnesota so far this season, this wasn’t scheduled to be a home game for the Timberwolves. However, after the original fixture was set for Mexico City back in December, the game was postponed because of smoke in the arena and it has been rescheduled to take place in Minnesota.
It remains to be seen how the Spurs cope without Parker, but looking at the bigger picture, they should have enough to get the required wins in the regular season and it is a matter of making sure that the Frenchman is available and at 100 percent when the playoffs start in just over a week’s time.