When the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs meet tonight for the fifth game of their first round series, a notable face will be absent. Gregg Popovich, head coach of the Spurs, will miss his third consecutive game.
Spurs announce Ettore Messina will continue to serve as coach for the team in Game 5 Tuesday in Oakland against the Warriors during Gregg Popovich’s absence.— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) April 23, 2018
Popovich has been away from the team for a week, following the death of his wife, Erin Popovich. During that time, assistant Ettore Messina has been patrolling the sidelines for San Antonio. It is likely a preview of what’s to come for Messina, who has already lined up some head coaching interviews across the NBA.
Despite the sadness that has fallen over the entire organization, the Spurs have rallied for Popovich, as they were quite competitive in game three, before comfortably winning game four. Still, the Warriors lead the series three games to one, and have the opportunity to advance to the second round tonight, in Oakland.
As always, we extend our thoughts and condolences to coach Popovich, his family, and the entire Spurs community.