Pop expresses ‘empathy’ for Spurs team running on empty

One minute and 56 seconds into the second quarter Wednesday in Utah, Jazz forward Joe Ingles took a pass on the left arc and waited.

Five Spurs on the floor watched … and watched … and watched as one of the NBA’s best shooters lined up the most open 3-pointer he had seen since pregame warmups.

Ingles’ ensuing swish put Utah up by 20 points and set the ball rolling for another dismal night in Salt Lake City for the Spurs.

If coach Gregg Popovich wanted to rip his team a new one after its lackluster start, well, even he seemed too exhausted by the thought.

“Overall, it’s just hard to get away from the fact that our cup was pretty empty after some tough travel, some tough losses and the schedule,” Popovich said. “I have to have a little bit of empathy for that, even though excuses are hard to make.”

For those who were scoring at home — and the Jazz certainly were — the 126-94 setback the Spurs’ absorbed marked their second consecutive whipping at Vivint Arena.

The Spurs dropped a 110-99 decision at Utah on Monday, in a game they trailed by as many as 25.

The Spurs’ fruitless two-game stand in Salt Lake ran their losing streak to five games heading into another road back-to-back in Sacramento and Portland on Friday and Saturday.

“It’s part of the NBA,” Spurs guard DeMar DeRozan said. “Nobody has…

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Jeff McDonald

Jeff McDonald

San Antonio Express-News

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Lead Spurs beat writer for the San Antonio Express-News. Fun enthusiast. Can’t sing the blues all night long like he used to.