The San Antonio Spurs have been hit hard by the injury bug this season.
Before the start of the regular-season, the team saw its primary point guard Dejounte Murray go down with a right torn ACL which caused him to miss the entire season. Soon after, the Spurs lost rookie Lonnie Walker IV and Derrick White in the preseason.
Any respite from the season-long injury curse did not ease when the Spurs faced the Utah Jazz on stop No. 4 of the 2019 Rodeo Road Trip.
The Spurs were without Rudy Gay, White and Walker as the team suffered a 125-105 loss to Utah. It marked their fourth-straight loss and a miserable start to the trip.
"There’s no time for sulking or anything like that," said Popovich when asked about the team's injuries. "Utah played better than we did. They executed better."
The Spurs' defense has floundered in the last four outings.
Opposing teams are posting an average of 130.0 points per game in the four-game skid and the Spurs are averaging 13.5 turnovers per game.
Some of that could be due to the loss of White who has been sidelined with right heel soreness. He is arguably the Spurs best perimeter defender and true point guard on the roster. The trouble is he isn't expected back until after the All-Star break.
“It’s our job," said Popovich. "You just go play the next game."
Their next games feature teams above and below .500 - Memphis, New York, Brooklyn and Toronto.
They'll have to rally around each other if they want to salvage their road trip before coming back to San Antonio on Feb. 27 against Detroit.
"But you know, we’ve just got to keep moving forward," said Bryn Forbes. "It’s going to happen. Like I said, a lot more games and we’re trying to get better right now.”
The Spurs are currently in seventh place in the West at 32-26. Every game counts moving forward if the team wants to make the postseason once again.
Getting a full squad at 100 percent health will help achieve that goal. With 24 games remaining, there is still plenty of time to fix what ails them on and off the court.
Said Forbes: "We have a lot more games, so I’m expecting us to look a lot better next game.”