Tony Parker’s 221 Consecutive Playoff Game Starting Streak Comes To An End



For the first time in the last 221 postseason games for the San Antonio Spurs, they won’t have Tony Parker in the starting lineup for tonight’s game against the Houston Rockets. In Game 2 of the Spurs-Rockets series, Parker broke the record of 220 consecutive playoff games started to set by former Spurs teammate Robert Horry; and by the end of that game, he’d ruptured his left quadriceps tendon.

Tonight, Patty Mills will move into the starting lineup in a pivotal Game 3, the first of the series to take place at Houston’s Toyota Center. With the two teams even at a game apiece, tonight’s matchup will have a huge impact on the momentum of this series. Not having Parker moving forward this postseason will be a considerable hindrance for San Antonio.

Parker’s absence will especially be felt because along with his veteran leadership missing from the locker room, he has been playing much better basketball in the postseason than in the regular season. In the eight playoff games he’s played in the past three weeks, Parker’s averaged a hair under 16 points per game compared to a hair over 10 points per game during the regular season.

Parker, for his career, has averaged 18.2 points per game in the playoffs. While in the two postseasons before this year’s he’d only averaged about 10 per contest, this year he’s seemingly stepping up to help fill the enormous void Tim Duncan left when he retired.

So when the starting lineups are announced prior to tip-off, take a second to consider how special it is that we’re saying, “For the first time in the Spurs’ last 222 postseason games, not at starting at point guard for San Antonio… Tony Parker.” That’s four rings and one Finals MVP Award (2007) for Parker over those last 200-plus playoff games.

This record is certainly impressive and is in no way an easy one to accomplish, yet it may not be too long from now that we’ll be talking about Parker’s streak being surpassed. As of right now, there’s only one player I could see setting a new record for most consecutive playoff starts in the foreseeable future.

LeBron James.

Maybe give it another ten years and I’d say one more guy has a shot at it.

Kawhi Leonard.

For now, though, the record is owned by one man.

Tony Parker.

About Brandon Wentz

Mayor of the borough of Mt. Carbon, Pennsylvania. Disappointed fan of the Phoenix Suns. Humble narcissist. Follow me on Twitter: twitter.com/thebighonch

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