Spurs poised for Title Run
The more things change, the more they stay the same. It’s another NBA season, and somehow in the year 2013 the San Antonio Spurs are one of the top teams in the league. “Experts” have been trying to bury the Spurs since their 2007 title, yet the Spurs keep on trucking. The Spurs have the best record in the West, and after their beat down of the Clippers, are now even the darling of ESPN. The media is done trying to dismiss the Spurs, and have finally accepted what south Texas already knows, The Spurs will not die.
The main reason the Spurs were supposed to be done competing at a high level was age. The Spurs were always known as the old team, so everybody figured they’d get too old real fast and would stop dominating the western conference. Yes, Duncan and Manu have aged, and are no longer the mega stars the once were. The Spurs saw this coming, so they’ve quietly assembled some young pieces around them, guys like Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard, Tiago Splitter and Gary Neal. Kawhi was a high draft pick, well high for the Spurs, acquired after trading fan favorite backup point guard George Hill. At the time it was a very unpopular trade, but now Spurs fans are loving Kawhi, and he is seen as the future robin to Tony Parker’s Batman.
Speaking of Tony Parker, the fact that he’s developed into a legit top 5 player in the NBA has helped the transition into the new decade. As Duncan and Manu got older, Parker got better. Tony Parker gladly accepted the role as leader of the team, and has elevated his game and this franchise to the top. When people talk about the Spurs great coach, they think of coach Pop and his long relationship with Tim Duncan. In my opinion, coach Pop’s legacy should truly be measured on how he made an undersized 18 year old from France into a league MVP candidate, and 3 time NBA Champion point guard.
Which leaves me to my last point, the rock that holds this franchise together, the architect of the best sports franchise of the last 15 years, coach Pop. Pop is the Tom Landry of the NBA, building a franchise to consistent greatness, by not being afraid to be innovative, and doing what he believes is best for his team. Pop has gone to war with David Stern, coached the Western Conference all star team, and has built enough depth to never miss a beat. If you want to know why the Spurs won’t die, Pop is the number 1 reason why the old, boring Spurs are still going deep in the playoffs, and poor America has to sit through a ton of Spurs playoff games, as Charles Barkley screams GINOOOOOBILI.