They are too old, too slow, they don’t stand a chance. That’s what I’ve been hearing the media say about San Antonio. Obviously somebody on the team heard it too because they just came out and showed two potential playoff teams how it is done.
On opening night, the Spurs extracted some revenge for last season’s early exit, defeating the Memphis Grizzlies 95-82. It was not the best game by Memphis, but it was still a dominating performance by the Spurs. Many said the Spurs would not be able to handle the younger, more athletic “Lob City” Clippers.
I think it was the other way around. The young-ins couldn’t handle the old guys. San Antonio came out and dominated the Clippers. The Spurs jumped up early, and minus part of the second quarter where they let the Clippers back in the game, this was not much of a contest.
San Antonio, even with their age is going to be a dangerous team this season. San Antonio has a few reasons why they should be able to stick around.
First, they have one of the best coaches in the league. Greg Popovich is quite a remarkable coach, and will find a way to make sure that Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili get their minutes, but are well rested come playoff time.
Then there is the cohesion this team has. The Big 3 have played together since the 2003 season. Tim, Tony, and Manu are quite familiar with each other. Possibly even throw Richard Jefferson in there, as he’s in his third year with the group.
Defense is going to be a key for this unit. They can score enough to hang with most of the top teams in the West, but if they cannot stop them, then there is going to be an issue. Tiago Splitter and DeJuan Blair need to step up and play big if the Spurs expect to make a deep playoff run.
San Antonio may be one of the oldest teams in the league, but don’t let that fool you, they still have their eyes on the prize.