Miami Heat 110, San Antonio Spurs 80: 30 points is either nothing or a lot

by

Just over a week ago the Spurs beat the Heat by 30 points in a runaway laugher. The Heat returned the favor tonight, running just as far, laughing just as hard, step for step, cackle for cackle, point for point.

San Antonio played Miami tough, at least for the first 7:30 minutes. But with 4:18 left in the first quarter Gregg Popovich subbed for his starters and the Spurs’ bench couldn’t maintain. A slow trickle of errors gave itself over to a deluge of failures and this game was over before halftime.

  • San Antonio’s bench contributed a paltry 21 points, many of which came when the game was already out of reach.
  • The Spurs shot a mere 4-22 from the three point arc.
  • Matt Bonner’s defense on Chris Bosh was, in a word, bad. In two words, it was very bad. It was so bad, in fact, that Gregg Popovich benched his star shooter. Zero minutes in the second half. Coach B would not have been impressed.
  • San Antonio’s interior defense was soft and porous; Miami set up early in the paint, got to the rim, drew fouls, and, in general, steamrolled the Spurs.
  • It’s too easy to say the Spurs missed shots they normally make, although that was true. It’s more accurate to say Miami played a great defensive game, pushing the Spurs off their spots and into a bad percentage.

So, what are we to make of this game? In a vacuum, nothing. But this is now the second time in eight days the Spurs have been embarrassed by another contender. Their recent 83-99 loss to the Lakers wasn’t nearly as close as the final score would indicate. It’s concerning that the Spurs are limping to the finish line after such an overwhelmingly positive start.

But let’s not read too deeply into the tea leaves. Maybe this game was nothing more than a fun exchange of I punch you in the face, you punch me in the face, now let’s go home. Two bad losses in a  tight span is just as likely to mean nothing as it is to mean anything.

Although, Friday’s game at Dallas now takes on more meaning. It’s not simply a test to see how the Spurs match against a potential playoff opponent. It’s an opportunity to think more carefully about this question: Has San Antonio’s mighty ship begun to take on water?

 

  • ITGuy

    @justin-ray
    I don’t think there are “bunch of premadonnas in here” but the usual ones sure are here crying and moaning as usual.

    Go Spurs Go!!

  • epeterd

    It wasn’t pretty, that’s for sure. Wish we’d gotten a few more foul calls. Oh well, can’t get any worse. I hope. We’ll still be the 1 seed. Go Spurs Go!

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    I think most of us are sick of ”fans” like TD=BE (who has decided to take on the role of Jim Henderson 2.0) and Hobson13 (who must either live under a rain cloud 24/7 or be related to Eeyore) who are NEVER satisfied with a Spur’s win and are ALWAYS justified with a Spur’s loss.

    Saying the Spurs should feel doom and gloom after this 30 point loss is about the same as saying the Heat should have felt the same way after their routing a week and a half ago.

    Using that logic, the Lakers should feel doom and gloom losing to the Heat last week, right?

    What we ALL need to realize is that during the playoffs, home court advantage is going to be vital (this season moreso than in season’s past) and the Spurs have that on their side.

    You have not seen the Spurs fighting and clawing for some of these games when the tide has clearly turned against them, precisely due to the fact that they have a damn good grip on HCA throughout the playoffs.

    I seriously doubt you would have Pop say “Let’s go have a good workout and try to get back in this thing” like he did last night if this were game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Heat or game 4 of the WCA against the Lakers or Mavericks.

    Pops does not want to wear his troops out, the fact is that this team has played above all expectations with very little reinforcements and has a HUGE lead for the #1 overall seed.

    All you do in the regular season is position yourself for the best possible seed and then once the playoffs start, let the chips fall where they may.

    In my humble opinion and while I admit that I do not know the Spur’s team psyche, we will see what type of momentum this team carries with it into the playoffs during the last week of the season…..the 2nd to last game is at LA and I fully expect to see the Spurs in full playoff, attack mode.

    If we see the Spurs take a 16 point chorizo at that point, then we can start to look a bit concerned but for right now, it makes NO SENSE AT ALL to blow this loss out of proportion.

    It sucks to lose, it is a nasty loss (no such thing as a good loss, is there?) but why don’t you handle it like the Spurs do……learn from it and move on.

    Honestly, if some of you get so worked up and pissed that you can’t see straight, perhaps you should take up gardening and leave the Spurs fandom to the big boys and girls.

  • Bankshot21

    Glad I posted before reading. Seems like no1 is talking about the game as much as they are talking about the playoffs and our “impending doom”. Kind of funny. Was reading the same comments while we rode both of our double digit win streaks earlier in the season. The same comments while we had a 22 game home winning streak. We even make it to the Finals and we weill still see the same comments. We get a 3-0 lead in the Finals and the same posters will be posting the same stuff.

  • Tyler

    Bushka

    “I don’t understand the attitude of win it all or fail.”

    Agreed. I’m sure if the Spurs don’t win it all, there will be this (nauseating) search for culpability on this board. I’m definitely not in that camp. Just because you don’t win doesn’t mean it’s someone’s fault. You do the best with what you have, and if that’s not enough, then it’s not enough.

    “When you start the whole year off surely this is where you want to be?”

    Yup. If you would have told me this is where we’d be at the end of the regular season, I would have laughed it off as a joke. Even with all our warts, no one can tell me they wouldn’t have taken our current position at the beginning of the season. Have we really lost our sense of perspective here?

    I understand there are concerns about this team – we all have them. But to discount what this team has done over the regular season because of a one or two game sample is somewhat shortsighted IMO. And if you’ve watched the Spurs over the last 5-10 years, when the Spurs look bad, they tend to look really, really bad.

  • Hobson13

    Alix Babaie
    March 15th, 2011 at 6:24 am

    “Saying the Spurs should feel doom and gloom after this 30 point loss is about the same as saying the Heat should have felt the same way after their routing a week and a half ago.”

    The Heat WERE in dire straits after their loss to the Spurs. In fact, their psyche was so fragile that they freaking cried after losing the very next game…

    “Using that logic, the Lakers should feel doom and gloom losing to the Heat last week, right?”

    The Lakers lost by 6 in a game in which they got jobbed (I watched the last few minutes of that game). The Spurs, for the second time in a row against an elite opponent, got the shit kicked out of them. I hope you can see the difference.

    “You have not seen the Spurs fighting and clawing for some of these games when the tide has clearly turned against them, precisely due to the fact that they have a damn good grip on HCA throughout the playoffs.”

    …or because Pop knew that based on the way this team has performed over the past two weeks, the game was already a lost cause. (the more likely scenario)

    “If we see the Spurs take a 16 point chorizo at that point, then we can start to look a bit concerned but for right now, it makes NO SENSE AT ALL to blow this loss out of proportion.”

    That’s exactly what was said after we got our ass handed to us in the Lakers game and it’s exactly what was said in each of our three underwhelming performances against two terrible teams and one .500 team. When are you people going to come up with more clever excuses?

    “Pops does not want to wear his troops out, the fact is that this team has played above all expectations with very little reinforcements and has a HUGE lead for the #1 overall seed”

    You don’t shut a team down with 20 games left in the regular season. The Spurs got their asses kicked and are not playing well. Period. Enough of these damned excuses!

    “In my humble opinion and while I admit that I do not know the Spur’s team psyche, we will see what type of momentum this team carries with it into the playoffs during the last week of the season.”

    Perhaps this is our only point of agreement. I believe that the Spurs can turn this bad stretch around. They’ve proven they can play much better defense since they were a stout defensive team during short bursts of the season. If the Spurs can improve then the sky is the limit. However, this version of the Spurs will not go far in May.

    “Honestly, if some of you get so worked up and pissed that you can’t see straight, perhaps you should take up gardening and leave the Spurs fandom to the big boys and girls.”

    You mean leave Spurs fandom to homers wearing rose colored glasses while they deceive themselves with their own self-induced delusions. And I’ve got news for you, Alix. TDBE and myself (while we’ve had our differences) aren’t the only two who see things as they are not as we want them to be.

  • Spursdynasty

    @ td=bestever, like Ryan said you made your points about the spurs weakness’s & to be honest I totally agree with you ” probably the ONLY thing I agree with you “, but this team has made it this far & we just have to see if it’s enough. The way you sound is like it’s a fore gone conclusion that because were not big enough that we don’t stand a chance! Someone once said “never underestimate the heart of a champion”!!! Last time I checked this spurs squad still has a few of them!!! “Long live the spurs dynasty” GSG!!!

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    The season is a year of basketball filled with peaks and valleys….you can be sure that there is NOBODY in that Spurs locker room crying after the loss last night. That team has more mental toughness and will show what a battle hardened team does in the playoffs, come April through June.

    Just remember this conversation……optimism is not homerism.

    Eeyore.

  • Spur4Life

    I believe Alix Barbie said it best. We are going to lose games. Why would we try to fight and scratch and risk injury for a game that truly means nothing (unless you are a reporter looking to boast the Heat and talk trash on Spurs)? Pop knows that the Heat would do anything for this win because they realize they are playing like an all star team(all the talent in world but no chemistry) who couldn’t see that coming? I hate to see my team lose even when I know it is going to happen, I still feel like punching a wall and my blood pressure soars, but in the end we let the heat get they’re revenge but just in 2007 we will get the last laugh!

  • Spursdynasty

    @Hobson 13, you call those excuses, some of us true spurs fans call it FAITH!!!! Faith that the defense will come around, faith that what we have is enough, faith that at the end,our spurs will stand alone with trophy # 5 !!! were not delusional were FAITH-ful cause that’s what true spurs fans should do!!!

  • DBAGuy

    Are you saying that fans of teams like Timberwolfes and Cavaliers and Clippers should also be faithful that their teams are going to win? I mean faith is one thing but being down right in denial is sick.

  • Hobson13

    Spursdynasty
    March 15th, 2011 at 7:41 am
    “@Hobson 13, you call those excuses, some of us true spurs fans call it FAITH!!!!”

    I applaud your beliefs, but they have nothing to do with how the Spurs perform on the court. And it is on-court performance that decides who will take home the trophy, not your faith. Right now, the Spurs are in need of great improvement. In the end, that’s my point.

    BTW, the Laker fans have faith. So do the Heat fans and Boston fans. Virtually every fan has faith. The real question is how misguided is that faith. Some faith is greatly misguided, others are justified. Spurs can be justified if they get their act straight and improve as a team.

  • Mr. International

    Why do the Spurs losses seem to have so much more meaning than their wins, according to some?

    And to compare faith in the Spurs (4 titles, best record in the NBA) to faith in the Timberwolves and Cavaliers is…I don’t even know what that is.

  • este

    PANIC BUTTON!!!! Look Playoff Bonner is back. Here we go again with a guy who is able to knock down 3 ptrs when no one is in his face but when teams decide to play the type of D you we will see in the playoffs the guy can’t buy a shot and his defense is an absolute joke.

  • este

    Fans shouldn’t freak out about losing one game what fans should freak out about is how the team is performing. The Spurs haven’t looked good even in their victories lately.

    The Spurs have struggled all season with their D in the paint we know that but now they’re struggling with their offense in the paint. Manu is having a tough time getting to the rim and Timmy hasn’t looked very sharp at all recently. The Spurs gave up 46 pts in the paint and were outscored by 12 pts in the paint to a team that is dead last in the NBA in that category.

  • Mexico fan

    Why should everything be good or bad? Even we can be highly disappointed with the loss, the team has been doing well, have the best record and still have a shot at the ring. It´s clear that there are more talented and taller teams, like LA, MIA or Dallas (two or three more perhaps), and seems to be that for the Spurs to win the effort should be bigger or more constant that these other teams. All our guys should be playing well and focused and playing big D for us to win. And that’s OK, is what we have. But having the current HCA, think it’s at least understandable that the focus is difficult to keep in the remaining of the season, the guys perhaps don’t want (consciously or not) want to risk their bodies, or simply can´t sustain the effort and are trying to arrive to the playoffs with their minds and body rested. Think is understandable that if the guys think that they can win now with just shooting (less effort than playing whole D), so they will try to get some wins by just shooting. But don’t think that anyone on the team is really thinking that the playoffs will be just a shooting contest. Spurs still have a chance. The road is difficult, yes, but the shot is there. Depend on the team, their focus, intensity and will.

  • junierizzle

    Nice post ROB.
    I don’t know about you but I’m getting tired of defending the SPURS’ chances on a SPURS blog.

    Bankshot21 is right, let’s just talk about the game. Let’s save all the playoff stuff for the playoffs.

    It seems that some people on here think they are Basketball geniuses and the rest of us don’t even know that the ball is round.

    For the last time, we know what the Spurs’ weakness are. You’re not exactly going out on a limb saying that they need size.
    Will we be shocked if the SPURS don’t win? No.
    Do they have a shot against the Mavs, LAkers, Thunder? Of course.
    It’s not like they are the Hawks who everyone knows have no shot at winning a title. No offense Hawks.

    Everyone has the right to their own opinion. And if the SPURS lose then we should be there for every game going down in flames with them. Not laughing because you “knew” they would lose.

  • DBAGuy

    @este

    +10

    It isn’t that they lost to Miami, it is the way they have been playing for a while now that worries us. Again, we shot 70+% against Detroit and won by 7. Are you kidding me? Every single of the last 3 victories had to come to the last minutes of the game. If you have not noticed that the Spurs lack defense and that defense is what wins championships then I don’t know what to tell you.

    You can have all the faith in the world that the Spurs will win it all, but it really is not showing on the floor lately. Besides you prob had faith the last 3 years and oh yeah, they didn’t win.

    Unless this team shows some resurgence and invents some defense out of who knows where, we will not be going far.

  • WH Silver

    I for one am not ready to count Splitter out of the Bigger Picture. I am never surprised by Pop’s stealth IQ. Realize, the Spurs changed up their offensive strategy (from post-centric) as #22 was being introduced to a new system. In this regular season he has been a luxury. Now consider the value of a healthy, multi-season-tested pro 7′er to come in v. Mavs/L.A. bigs in key stretches – possibly with, rather than in place of TD – solely for defensive purposes. Sure, I’da liked to have seen more of the guy to date but who among you will second guess the aSerbic One? btw, anybody remember a 7′ defensive role player in the 2003 Championship named Willis? Just sayin’…. Big fun still to come!

  • Sarge

    Gah. Reading all that makes my head hurt. The negativity is just too much.

    We lost by 30. It sucks. We should be concerned. I get it. But at the same time, losses can be used to teach this team a lesson. There haven’t really been that many learning opportunities, given our current record. Maybe this will help the team refocus, much as the Heat have after their five-game skid.

    As for acquiring other players, I know we chased after a few free agents, and were spurned. Let’s face it, there are a lot of players that just don’t want to play in San Antonio. It limits who we can bring in, whereas you have players that want to go to places like Miami, L.A., New York, and whatnot.

    Does this team have weaknesses? Of course it does. Will they have what it takes to win the title? It remains to be seen. But one thing is for certain: there’s a reason we play the games. Anything can happen. Until we get knocked out of the playoffs, or end up eventual champions, everyone should just chill out and enjoy the journey!

  • http://espn.com Ed

    What a pathetic effort. But a special thanks goes out to our favorite Spurs hater Joey Crawford. Midway through the 3rd with Miami up by 20 points FT’s were 22-3 Miami. How you play that physical and commit so few fouls is hard to understand but the fact most Spurs fans see Crawfords’ name and assume a loss has a lot of creedence. It would be nice to see the Spurs show some balls when they get slapped in the face but they just take it in stride and prepare for the next game. Splitter MUST start playing because Blair ain’t cutting it defensively. C’mon POP!

  • Bruno

    No panic, is not all games the refs will carry them in 3 quarters, TD have only -4 with that, in playoff he will play 35 minutes per game, we will be fine

  • Bruno

    No panic, is not all games the refs will carry them in 3 quarters, TD have only -4 with that, in playoff he will play 35 minutes per game, we will be fine.

  • TD = Best EVER

    To those tired of Defending the Spurs chances on a Spurs blog….. Let me say this….

    I’m tired of trying to make rational arguments to irrational people……….I mean how many times can you all move the goal posts and still claim to have any kind of hold on the “True Spurs Fan” title…..

    I remember back when we signed Bonner, I was against it…… Said it was too much and that he always fades……. he still has time to turn it around, but that’s looking more likely the case now…. You all said different, and now are agreeing with me……..

    After those close wins vs Denver – I said that the Spurs needed a defensive minded wing player, and should trade from him….. You all said IndyG/Anderson were our best 2 defenders(Both were out during that time)…… Now you are saying IndyG was never the defensive stopper….. really…… After the Kobe game you were all aboard….. he was the truth, and now that is has been a while since we have seen it our of him, he was never the answer…… moving the goal post

    I was one of the people who 1st brought up our issue with rebounding and size in our Bigs……I said Splitter would not help us THIS YEAR….. You all said that we have plenty and Splitter would be the answer after:
    Time to rest from Spanish League
    Time to recover from freak injury – fatigue related
    Time to get to know the system
    Midway through the season
    RRT
    Post ALL star Break
    Down the Stretch

    Now you are starting to say he will not help us this year……. moving the goal post

    So the problem here isn’t me and the few others that can see the truth…. it’s with those who refuse to accept it…… We are an offensive team that gets their energy to defend based on how their shots are falling……… I don’t think we can ever win the games in the 70′s-80′s anymore….. Our Defense doesn’t seem to hold up unless we are scoring points to go with it….. And that doesn’t win come playoff time…… it hasn’t as long as i have been watching basketball – 89-90 season………. And I’m not going to try and convince myself that it will now only because it my team……

  • TD = Best EVER

    Post was cut off by mistake……..

    We still can urn it around and put in 2 weeks or 5-7 games of GOOD Defense to end the year and turn it around……. We don’t have to be 48minofHell anymore…….because we can score points….

    MJ’s bulls played good D, not great, but they would always start the 3rd qt if full D mode to try and put the game away……. That’s all we have to do, we can’t wait until the last 6 min of a game to try and play Good Defense…… its too late by then the other team is full of confidence and luck happens……..

  • Sarge

    I hate to get involved in this, but for crying out loud, TD=BE, let it go. We understand the flaws. We get that unless the defense improves, the chances of a championship are slim. Many of us would have even loved to have seen a nice free agent pickup. But it didn’t happen. Harping on about it isn’t going to help.

    It’s not so much what you’re saying, it’s how you’re saying it. You have clearly lost all hope in the team, period. If it’s really as hopeless as you make it out to be, just stop watching the games, and don’t drag the rest of us down with you. Just crown the dang Heat (or whoever else beats us) and be done with it.

  • Dr. Who

    All I can say is… interesting.

    Interesting that at the beginning of the season we didn’t exactly think we’d have the league’s best record; and here we are. After the thrashing of Miami even the doubters seem to come on board. And now… well, my goodness ball handling and execution has been suspect to say the least. How many times did we see someone fumble a pass around before getting a handle on it last night? Go back to the Sac game in the 3rd qtr where every other possession was a ridiculous turnover. Seems like a combination of the focus waning and also teams are finally getting up for the Spurs and playing their tails off with something to prove.

    What is really noticeable is the perimeter defense that is being played against the Spurs; the Redhead in particular. When’s the last time you saw the Red Rocket moving all over the court with the ball? Teams are d-ing Bonner up chest to chest and forcing him (along with our other outside shooters) off their spots and they aren’t getting the typical stationary open 3’s (even with the extra pass). I really hated that we were a team that lived and died by the 3. Well teams have been d-ing up that 3 with a fever and it’s showing. Odom was chest to chest on Bonner and he was a non factor. Last night was more of the same with out outside shooters; open looks were few and far between. It’s like other teams are cracking the code, to beat the Spurs, D the snot out of their perimeter guys since their bench doesn’t have any real slashers. Natrually it’s not that simple if we can find ways to penetrate. Hopefully CIA Pop can use his military counter intelligence and find a master plan that doesn’t include “we just have to make shots.” He gets paid a lot of money, he’ll earn it.

    The lack of focus during this stretch is reminiscent to what we saw with last year’s Spurs team as well. Perhaps it’s cruise control mode and they haven’t flipped the switch yet. The Lakers flipped their switch and are hitting their stride, let’s hope the Spurs can do the same leading up to the playoffs. McDyess not coming off the bench might be upsetting the apple cart a bit and the team is still trying to get a better feel for the rotations. That’s why you make this move now and not in late April. For as many “statement” games as other teams have had against the Spurs this year… this Dallas game just became an important “statement” game to the Silver and Black. It will count just as much in the standings as the win did against the Kings but mentally it has to mean much more after getting thoroughly embarrassed by two contenders within a week’s time.

    Let’s beat those Ponies!!!

  • TD = Best EVER

    Also let me add….. I know this has been a long post, but this is another moving the goal post argument….

    Why is it ok for “True Spurs Fans” all of a sudden that they don’t care about winning it all this year…… That they are just along for the ride…… To me that sounds negative and no one jumps on them for saying it now even though they dared not say anything like that 2 months ago……When everybody was coming up with cleaver ways to say drive for 5, one for the thumb, etc…… When I was the only bad guy in the room…..Getting the Jim H/banishment threats……..

    Now we have a few more villains to some folks here(I’m not gonna name them) and it seems to be ok with just playing out the season and losing in the playoffs……. I’m curious to those who think like this, at what round can we lose and be considered a successful year. 2nd round in 6 games or what????

  • Este

    I guess the question is what type of fan blog is this and what types of comments are appropriate. Is this the type of blog that teenage girls set up so they can share their mutual admiration for their favorite heartthrob or is this a sports fan blog where having a rational discussion about your favorite teams shortcomings are welcome?

    If you see a problem and point it out it doesn’t make you less of a fan it means you would like to see the team take steps to address these problems.

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    Sarge
    March 15th, 2011 at 8:55 am

    Word!

  • Bruno

    I really don’t know why people are worried, we have the #1 seed, last season #7, TD will not play 25 minutes per game in playoff,Bonner and Blair will not play together(i hope), Ginobili, Parker, Hill, Neal will not struggling every game, all calls will not to other team

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    Well said, Bruno / Borat, well said. :)

  • DBAGuy

    I agree with “TD = Best EVER” and “Este” Who are the rest of you to tell us we aren’t true fans. Thats the thing we are the true fans, we don’t just watch the game to say, that was fun. We care about the ultimate result of the season. Now I’m not criticizing as to why we don’t have the payers we have, but certain things have not cleaned up, a whole year and our defense has not gotten better. No plays drawn out for RJ and we can see hes back to RJ1.0 We started the year well and have been settling back. We simply point the needs of this team to be a good contender. I think they can do it, but they are definitely not showing it lately. They need to step up and do it now.

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    TD = Best EVER
    March 15th, 2011 at 9:03 am

    Why is it ok for “True Spurs Fans” all of a sudden that they don’t care about winning it all this year……

    That is the only thing that you have posted on here today that I agree with, having the best record and the HCA throughout needs to be converted into ring #5, because as talented as the West is, you must take advantage of such an opportunity.

    That being said, I think many people on here have a problem with you coming off as a know it all.

    Look, I won’t argue with you that the Spurs have deficiencies but so do the other contenders.

    Think about it a second:

    LA lacks a strong bench and they have a point guard who is old as dirt and can only score if he is WIDE open.

    MIA lacks chemistry and they have lacked a killer instinct when faced with serious adversity.

    DAL has the most talent money can buy but they can’t buy a heart and Dirk is a pussy.

    BOS overthinks the hell out of things and Danny Ainge finally had another brain fart and traded away their toughest big because he feels Shaq is a notch above Perkins, which will be their undoing.

    ORL has a hot head for a center, who can’t seem to keep himself from getting T’d up every other game.

    OKC lacks a big playoff series win on their resume…..close to beating LA does not cut it.

    Need I go on?

    OK, so the Spurs lack three 7 footers to match up with LA but as I have mentioned, the other contenders lack things as well. I will take my chances with a relatively well rested Tim Duncan, Antonio McDyess and energy guys like DeJuan Blair and George Hill off the bench and battle hardened champions in Parker and Ginobili and let the chips fall where they may.

    Essentially, whoever can maximize their strengths and conceal their weaknesses the best will win it all…..it is as simple as that, wouldn’t you agree?

  • http://www.bpifanconnect.com Alix Babaie

    Really, it comes down to the mantra that the Spurs always keep in the forefront of their thoughts once the playoffs start…..we simply gotta win 16 games in the playoffs.

  • Dr. Who

    @TD=BE

    You’re not the only one that has made those points. Many have. I’ve clamored with many “free Taigo” rants; and let’s just say that even the most positive fans have been vocal about adding two things… length and a wing defender. Lots of us have chimed in on that note (s). But the deal is when the trade dealine approached, we knew no trade would be made. I didn’t bother to join trade speculation threads because it wasn’t going to happen. So I don’t think many on this blog think you have some revelation of truth from the mountaintop. But the delivery is more that you are like a ninja in the shadows ready to pounce on optimistic Spurs fans out of nowhere with an “I told you so!”

    If we took a poll of this blog and asked if the Spurs don’t win a title, what will the reasons be… Team D, length and cold 3 pt shooting (lest we forget the league’s best 3 pt shooter still has yet to show up in a playoff series) will be at the top of the list. I don’t think you’ll get an agrument. There are plenty on the board that agree with what you’re saying, but at this point there isn’t much we can do about personnel. So we lie in wiat for the ninja… All we can at this point is utilize the personnel we have. So here we have it… no lockdown defender or defensive big. Can we win without them? Yep sure can we’ve managed to so far. Can we lose without them? Oh yeah, you bet we’ve done that too. So we gotta work with what we have, the Spurs flaws aren’t going away. This is one helluva messed up season. Never thought we’d have the best record in the NBA. And never thought we’d get abused like one of Charlie Sheen’s ex pornstar girlfriends by two contenders within a week’s span. How about we agree that with the current personnel this team has performed better than expected. And with all the trade speculation at the beginning of the season most players did not want to come to SA (Bell and Barnes come to mind). But if we’d landed Shaq (which I was against) would we have a better record? How about we agree if the FO had made moves we cannot say for certainty that the Spurs would be in a better position. How about we focus on what the current incarnation of the Spurs can do to get back on track and not what we don’t have on the roster. Most know what we are lacking and those that do not, are simply fans that enjoy watching the game without X’s and O’s.

    Honestly I’m curious what you think about how teams have been playing us lately. It’s my impression that they have been D-ing the snot out of our shooters and making Bonner’s life a tough one in particular. I can’t recall when I saw a team really key on Bonner; they have been lately and it shows. On the offensive end they went at him last night too. Possibly by design. Those are things I thought I saw, did ninja see same too? We can all coexist on this board… It’s a shame because you make some good points but some refuse to listen because they fear the ninja with pointy throwing stars.

  • ITGuy

    Go Spurs Go!!

  • Dr. Who

    @Alix

    Nice post! Also throw the coaches in there. I was tough on Pop last year and critical of him again this year. But what he’s done with this group has been pretty damn amazing. Having playoff/championship experience will pay off if facing the likes of Spolstra or Jim Carey’s brother again in the playoffs. Yet another reason not to like the Lakers, I hate “Phillip” but he can coach his stupid team and win.

    Totally agree about the Celts too. I think they outsmarted themselves with Perkins. At some point in the playoffs (especially given Shaq’s health) it’s got to catch up with them, just like it did last year.

  • Bankshot21

    @TD = B.E.

    Your posts are officially on visual mute.

  • Este

    I gotta believe that the Perkins trade was a business decision not a basketball one. I have contended that the C’s know something about Perkins knee that isn’t good.

    Perkins hurt the knee during the finals less than a yr ago. For smaller guys it takes about a yr before a guy can come back and compete and about 2 full yrs for a player to get back to their old form. The C’s can’t afford to wait two seasons for Perkins to recover their championship window is closing faster than the Spurs.

  • Jimbo

    @TD=BE,

    I don’t want to get in a pissing match, but a lot of people have been aware of the Spurs’ deficiencies (e.g., a lockdown wing defender, frontcourt athleticism) for quite some time.

    Plus, were you the guy at the beginning of the season who was saying we had to get Matt Barnes, Rasheed Wallace, or Shaq so they could yell at Pop and lead us to the finals? I’m asking because I’m honestly not sure, it might have been TradeTP. If that was you, then you lost all basketball credibility with that line of thinking. If that was not you, please disregard this post.

  • Emilio

    I really think some people have not actually seen the game, just read the stats. The 30 pt difference was with all their stars playing 40min each even when they were 20pts up. Plus the dubious officiating.

    In addition, I think it is pretty evident most players are already thinking about playoffs, settling for long jumpers instead of attacking the rim. In a different situation, Manu for instance, would be going for the rim much more often.

    Of course the team is far from perfect, it’s been really passive rebounding wise, and certain matchups are defective (Bosh vs Bonner was pretty obvious for everyone). However, I would like to see a match where both teams have things to lose before writing off the Spurs.

  • TD = Best EVER

    @ Jimbo

    Matt Barnes = Defensive stud…… So yeah I’m sure i pitched for him….. Shaq-if healthy for the playoffs = stud…….. Wallace – no wasn’t a big fan of his last year…..

    Barnes is one of the best perimeter defenders in the league the past 3-4 years…. top 10 anyway….. how is that a bad pickup

    Shaq – you can’t teach size/strength- just look at his numbers – If he is healthy – teams have to account for him at all times with one of their best bigs, leaving someone not very talented to play TD. Not many teams in the playoffs could do that. Picture Dirk trying to stop TD/Shaq in the post. I know TD can’t play Dirk, but he never could, so that doesn’t matter. The Shaq argument is a simple one…. Make Pau Gasol, Dirk, and other like him play Defense as well as offense. Shaq will make them play and pay for their lack of Defense……

  • Dr. Who

    Dammit IT guy! That’s friggin’ hilarious. Best post of the day!

  • Pandemonium

    48 minutes of hell indeed. Now is the gut-wrenching, “I-can’t-believe-I-care-about-these-bums” roller-coaster ride. Hang on because it’s going to be a wild one. Spurs fans…get behind your team.

  • TD = Best EVER

    @ Dr. Who

    “Honestly I’m curious what you think about how teams have been playing us lately. It’s my impression that they have been D-ing the snot out of our shooters and making Bonner’s life a tough one in particular.”

    Yes I have seen this, teams know that the 3-point line is our biggest weapon. That most of our role players(Hill, Neal, Bonner, Anderson) are better shooters than slashers/playmakers. I even noticed a few times when playing the Lakers that Ron Artest was guarding Bonner, to keep him from getting any good looks…..

    Also about the Celtics…… it was reported that Perkins wanted A LOT more $ than the Celts were willing to give up…. Also that the Celts are looking at the future and see Green/Rondo/Davis as a better trio than with Perkins in that mix…..After their current Big 3 retire…..

  • Titletown99030507d

    Is this genius coaching or what? What the hell is Bonner on Bosh for? Let’s face it people there’s something ratty about Splitter not playing. Unleash the big man for goodness sakes! You and I know if Bonner is sucking at the 3 pointers then why does Pop continue to have him on the court and have him cover Bosh. Damn! that’s Chris Bosh! Cut the crap, Splitter would neutralized his ass. In trash time at 47 seconds left in the game Splitter boxes out and gets a rebound and puts it back up off the glass. BOOYAH! A single/single. How about twenty more minutes of that Pop so he can give you a damn double double. This is frikin ridiculous. You all know he’s a better option right now and don’t look at the stupid record I said right now or we’ll pay hell for it in the playoffs. People were not playing Houston or Sacramento in the playoffs! Get over the Bonner/ Blair combo. Put a fork in it. They are done! Next in line. And I don’t mean Novak either. How about getting a little risky and play the big man from Brazil damn it! Now Im really pissed. Thanks Pop.

  • Colin

    This place is a mess.

  • TD = Best EVER

    @ Alix Babaie

    “That being said, I think many people on here have a problem with you coming off as a know it all.”

    OK you do have a point…. I can see why many here would think that……That’s why I try to back up my opinions with facts as oppose to just saying things and expecting you all to believe me….. Believe it or not, I actually do some research before I post on here…… to try and make sure I’m at least mostly accurate in the things I say……But even in that I have been accused of using too many facts/stats in my points…..

    “Essentially, whoever can maximize their strengths and conceal their weaknesses the best will win it all…..it is as simple as that, wouldn’t you agree?”

    Yes you are correct….. the problem with our weaknesses Vs teams like Dallas/La etc…. is that theirs are mostly mental…… How motivated they are or will they choke / again are the tough enough…..

    Ours is more physical – and it’s a lot harder to solve that problem with the same roster……We get our defensive energy from our offensive success with very few exceptions……The problem with that is that offense will always come and go…… ALWAYS not if…… and when it does, will we just cave and tank or find another way to spark our offense. Can we force TO’s, will we lockdown the paint and let our defense lead to offense for us or what…… will we slow down the game like the Lakers do to try and mask their deficiencies…….If so we are already behind in making that adjustment…… you need plenty of time to put that new system in place. You also need leave time to make adjustments to it and have a game or two to rest at the end if you can…….

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Timothy Varner

    This is a first, but the lack of civility in this thread is at an unusually low point. I’m going to ask that we close this conversation down. -The Management