Starting 5: Rest well earned

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Every morning, we will give you five things from the night before in the NBA to start your day.

1: Second wind

Eric Gay/AP/Stamford AdvocateMaybe this is why Gregg Popovich wanted to save his best player's legs.

San Antonio needed every single one of Tony Parker's 30 points and six assists and every single one of Tim Duncan's 27 points and 15 rebounds to help force overtime and defeat Memphis in overtime 99-95 at AT&T Center on Saturday. More than that, the Spurs needed every single one of those points to erase a 13-point deficit heading into the fourth quarter and hold the high-powered Grizzlies to just 14 points in the final 12 minutes.

To that point, the Grizzlies had a pretty solid offensive effort. Despite shooting 36.4 percent from the floor and 4 for 15 from beyond the arc, Memphis put five players in double figures led by Marc Gasol's 20 points. Pretty impressive effort on a bad shooting night to take that big of a lead.

Perhaps though it was tired legs that took over. Memphis was playing on the second night of a back-to-back. Meanwhile, Duncan looked refreshed in scoring 20 points in the first half and the Spurs had the ability to close.

Or maybe all that is overblown. And no one should talk about the rigors of an NBA schedule. Everyone deals with it at one point or another.

And the result of tonight's game likely had nothing to do with the schedule. It was more likely a battle between two really good teams that went to overtime.

2: No gap for Nets

Rhona Wise/Reuters/New York Daily NewsThere are just some questions you never ask professional athletes. Someone asked Gerald Wallace ostensibly whether he thought there was a gap between his Nets and the defending champion Heat. That gap was a half game entering Saturday's matchup.

The gap was 13 points after Miami won 102-89 at American Airlines Arena on Saturday.

Still, the Nets for 36 minutes continued their "take us seriously" tour and competed, hung with, and were beating the Heat. Miami needed 32 points in the third quarter to take the lead and needed a serious defensive effort to hold Brooklyn to 30 points in the second half and secure the win.

Until that point, Andray Blatche scored 20 points and eight rebounds in dominating the undersized Heat and six other Nets players scored in double figures.

It took Dwyane Wade putting in a season-best 34-point performance and LeBron James posting a ho-hum 21-point, 9-rebound, 6-assist effort to race ahead and get the win. The Heat, in other words, needed to be the Heat.

And to do that against Brooklyn means the team has arrived as an Eastern Conference contender, even if the team did not win. That will come with experience and perhaps Brook Lopez's return. But a gap between the East's top two teams? It doesn't quite exist as much as some would believe.

3:  HIGHLIGHTS!!!

Nicolas Batum beats the Cavs

Deng to Noah

DeMarcus Cousin plays some lazy defense

4: Line of the Night: Larry Sanders — 18 points, 16 rebounds, 5 blocks

How do you follow up a triple double? How about another fantastic performance against the Celtics? Sanders followed up his triple double with another really good performance. In fact, it was the first time he had recorded back-to-back double doubles and just his sixth career double double. So is this a new horizon for Sanders?The Bucks seem to think it is at least deserving of Player of the Week consideration following the 91-88 win Saturday.

5:  You can quote me on that

Well, guys, did you see the type of shots we were getting? We missed 29 shots within two feet of the basket. So, the problem is, we’ve got the make those shots. Then the next thing is we’ve got to get back.

-Pistons coach Lawrence Frank

If you're going to write anything, this is strictly on the players. It's not the coach's fault.

-Kings guard John Salmons following a 116-81 loss to the Clippers

Philip Rossman-Reich

About Philip Rossman-Reich

Philip Rossman-Reich is the managing editor for Crossover Chronicles and Orlando Magic Daily. You can follow him on twitter @OMagicDaily

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