The Scoop:Mills isn't expected to make his regular-season debut until sometime in January, so him missing Monday's game should come as a surprise to no one. Splitter has played a total of 10 minutes this season, and his calf issue has turned out to be a fairly severe injury. Aron Baynes and Boris Diaw will continue to get some extended minutes with Splitter sidelined, but neither player makes for a very attractive option in standard leagues.
San Antonio's success has been built on a brotherhood, understanding that relationship building off the court lends itself to cohesion on it. The philosophy has served Gregg Popovich well as players like Tim Duncan and Tony Parker have signed contracts below market value to play for a coach they view as somewhat of a father figure . Almost every team imitates this system; few if any duplicate it. On the eve of a Western Conference showdown against the Los Angeles Lakers, Manu Ginobili and Patty Mills offered a glimpse behind the curtain, trading barbs on Twitter in that same brotherly vein. The exchange began with an innocuous tweet from Mills, who is still rehabbing from shoulder surgery over this past summer and shared a post-workout photo of his rather impressive 6-foot, 185-pound frame with the caption, "Keep The Passion" and, of course, a fire emoticon.