Archive for the ‘San Antonio Spurs’ Category

Best ‘Quality’ win of the season …

November 15, 2008

… occurred last night, in the NBA.

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* The 76ers coming back from way down in the 1st quarter, on the road, to edge the Pacers, [Phi 94, IND 92]?

* The Bobcats home-court W over the under-manned Jazz [CHA 104, Uta 96]?

* The Knicks moving to 6-3 [.667] with their home-court victory over The Thunder [NYK 116, Okl 106]?

* The Nets home-court W over the surging Hawks [NJN 115, Atl 108]?

* The Bucks road victory, in OT, over the Grizzlies [Mlw 101, MEM 96]?

* The Magic’s road win, coming back from an 8-pt deficit, in the 4th Quarter, vs the Mavericks [Orl 102, DAL 100]?

* The Suns’ road victory, in OT, without the services of Steve Nash vs the Kings [Pho 97, SAC 95]?

* The Pistons’ stunning road win vs the Lakers, the NBA’s last-remaining undefeated team [Det 106, LAL 95]?

* The Nuggets gut-check W over the Celtics, in Beantown [Den 94, BOS 85]?

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No … actually … it was none of these terrific games, which pale in comparison to …

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When your team is …

* Without its best Wing Player for the first 3 months of the regular season, due to off-season ankle surgery, and then

* Loses its Starting Point Guard for the next 2-4 weeks, due to a high ankle sprain, and then

* Gets off to a 2-5 start, overall

… with a next opponent perceived to be one of the elite level outfits in the League, and then

* Falls behind by 14 pts, at home, in the 4th Quarter [at the 07:37 mark], and then

* Holds its opponent without a Point for the final 4:44 of the contest, and then

* Scores the final 12 points of the game …

taking the lead, by 1 point, with 0:59 on the game clock, on a Layup by your All-star Center, and then

* Sees that Center shot-block away the potential game-winner, in the final seconds of play, on a hard & fast driving layup attempt at the rim by the opponent’s ultra-quick PG

to preserve a much-needed victory [SAS 77, Hou 75] over an opponent with each of its own ‘Big 3’ players … i.e. Yao Ming, Tracy McGrady and Ron Artest … in the line-up last night. 

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THAT … ^^^ … right there, goes down in this space as the type of never-to-be forgotten Victory which will form the basis of the Legacy of the Spurs two NBA immortals, Tim Duncan & Gregg Popovich.

To wit:

Duncan scores 22 points, Spurs beat Rockets
“What can you say about Tim Duncan that hasn’t already been said,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “He provides the leadership on this team. He is the center of the program.”

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He is ‘The BIG Fundamental’ … and this

The Force is With Us.

The Force is With Us.

 

 

his Jedi Master.

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Survivor Series ’08-09: Western Conference Playoff Race

October 17, 2008
Tribal council meeting? What tribal council meeting? I have 'The Big Fundamental'. Bring It On.

Tribal council meeting? What tribal council meeting?

 

Courtesy of BDL.

A picture speaks a thousand words.

The answer for the Spurs

May 6, 2008

Q1. When was the last time you saw Manu Ginobili look & act like this?

A1. During the 2006 playoffs vs the Dallas Mavericks.

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Unless Gregg Popovich & Co. finally figures out that the Bruce Bowen vs Chris Paul match-up is NOT the way San Antonio SHOULD be playing this series … and creates the Tony Parker vs Chris Paul match-up, instead … the Spurs are going to be in serious of jeopardy of not getting past the Hornets in the 2nd round of the playoffs.

Going with the Bowen-B vs Paul match-up unnecessarily is the same sort of ‘poor’ coaching decision that cost the Spurs dearly 2 years ago in their series vs the Mavericks … where Pop insanely tried to ‘go small’ against Dallas rather than rely on San Antonio’s tried & true Inside Finesse & Power Game (in their customary 3 out/2 in Offensive Attack alignment).

Over the years, Gregg Popovich has shown a tendency to excel when he’s got the better of the two teams in a contentious series … but, as well, to NOT necessarily make the correct adjustments in a series when he finds himself facing an opponent with more basketball talent than the Spurs have at the moment across the board.

Secondly … IF the Spurs would only realize that this is the rotation which they need to be using this series vs the Hornets …

STARTERS:
PG – Parker v Paul
OG – Barry v Peja
SF – Ginobili v Peterson
PF – Thomas v West
C – Duncan v Chandler

BENCH:
PG – Vaughn v Pargo
OG/SF – Bowen-B & Finley v Wells & Wright
PF/C – Oberto & Horry v Ely & Bowen-R

so that they can High-Low the Hornets to Death …

then San Antonio will still be able to get by New Orleans in either 6 or 7 games.

On the other hand, however, if Pop keeps overplaying Tony Parker and inserting Mr. Udoka into the game when he shouldn’t be (e.g. vs West or Peja or Wells) … the Spurs quest for back-to-back championships will be over quicker than you can say, Happy Chris Paul Blog Day.

Eclipse of the Suns: Critically Acclaimed?

May 2, 2008

If you’re a regular reader of this space, you already know that the window of opportunity for this specific Group of Phoenicians was closed well before the recent goings-on in the Valley of the Sun

NBA 1st Round Playoffs

Gm. 1: SAS 117, PHX 115
Gm. 2:
SAS 102, PHX 96
Gm. 3:
SAS 115, PHX 99
Gm. 4:
PHX 105, SAS 86
Gm. 5:
SAS 92, PHX 87
San Antonio wins the series 4-1

and includes the goary details found right here …

A requiem for the S.S.O.L. Era in Phoenix 

… which re-traces expertly how it is ‘these Tragic players’ have arrived at where they are today, apparently, ready to dissolve their relationships with one another … permanently.

While the vast majority of the content in that specific piece is indeed accurate, there remains one central (three-pronged) notion with which this corner of the blogosphere must raise an objection:

Part A
“Well, that’s OK that they didn’t win the title, at least they were critically acclaimed!

Part B
In other words, it didn’t really matter that they never won a championship, … We would always remember them fondly and feel like they were more successful than they actually were.

Part C
Maybe the Suns didn’t win a championship, but we’ll remember them 100 times more fondly than the brutally efficient and hopelessly bland Spurs …

Au Contraire
When the NBA’s history books are written, and then re-visited again and again, generations from today, it will indeed ‘matter‘ a great deal that these Phoenix Suns were unable to win a championship and, in fact, never even reached a single NBA Finals.

In reality, each year that goes by will further dim the scorching light which emanates today from this form of ‘Sun(s) Worship‘ and instead will illuminate the (formerly and erroneously much-maligned) brilliant dominance of the San Antonio Spurs (winners of 4 NBA championships in 9 years, and still counting) and their transcendant Head Coach (Gregg Popovich, aka ‘Air Force One’) and (unassuming) Superstar Player (Tim Duncan, aka ‘The Big Fundamental’).

In no way, shape or form will the NBA’s history books ‘critically acclaim’ and/or reflect a reality other than this:

1. The NBA championship is won by the team that best combines the 3 Phases of the Game … i.e. Rebounding, Defense & Efficient Offense … in a balanced manner.

2. The League MVP Award was won in consecutive years (’04-05 & ’05-06) by the best Offensive Point Guard in the history of the NBA who … with outstanding ambidexterity, exceptional horizontal athleticism, supreme hand-eye coordination, spectacular ball-handling, passing & shooting skills … developed into the most prolific ‘Pick & Roll/Pop’ Artist the League has ever known, when allowed to ply his craft in a ‘Full Throttle’ Offensive Transition Attack and culminating in a dynamic ‘4 out/1 in half-court alignment’ (rarely ever used in the NBA), in conjunction with teammates who could shoot the ball proficiently and/or finish at the rim athletically.

3. The most ‘fondly’ remembered teams in NBA history are the ones whose names appear in the furthest left column on this specific list … NBA Finals: All-time Champions.

4. The San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers were the two ‘Critically Acclaimed‘ teams during the 1998-2008 era in the annuls of the NBA.