Duncan was quoted after the Spurs were eliminated from the playoffs that he was a Spur for life and that he would like to finish his career in San Antonio. That’s music to my ears. It also means to me that if Spur management can hold on to the core of players that made the team so exciting to watch this season there is no reason why the team won’t content again next season. There was a time when many of the fans thought that Duncan was fading fast but not anymore after seeing him play with renewed energy this past season. According to some reports, Duncan lost weight and worked hard in the offseason to get in good shape. And up to the conference finals we all thought the Spurs were the best team in the league. They were playing team basketball better than anyone and most of the writers and television commentators and analysts were raving about them after they put together that long winning streak. Many picked them to win it all.
I was convinced that this team was the best Coach Gregg Popovich and his staff had put together in several years with the addition of some exciting and young players that injected new energy into the team and energized the veterans.
That why it’s so hard to understand how the Oklahoma City Thunder could come back from a two-game deficit and beat them in four straight. I watched in horror the four losses take place right in front of my face in my den room and I couldn’t believe that the Spurs would lose after winning the first two games of the series. I still find it hard to explain.
When my cousin Arthur Trevino, who doesn’t get the Spurs telecasts at his home, called me and asked me to explain what happened to the Spurs I couldn’t find the right words. “I really don’t know,” I said. “The Thunder simply caught fire in those last four playoff games and couldn’t miss. No matter how good the Spurs defense was or who Popovich put on the floor, the Thunder just didn’t miss shots. They were unbelievable,” I said.
That’s also why I couldn’t believe that they went limp against the Miami Heat. After they beat the Spurs I was convinced that the Thunder would win it all. I guess that’s what makes NBA basketball so exciting. It’s unpredictable.
And that’s why I believe that if Duncan returns and gives it another good try in the coming season, the Spurs will be in the thick of the race to the very end.