Almost 2 months ago, about 2 weeks before the NBA Playoffs started, my cousin Nix asked me if anyone can beat the Boston Celtics this season. I was adamant in saying that the Spurs are still the team to beat no matter what the regular season records say.
Alas, after Praising San Antonio to high heavens, the defending champs got blown out by Phoenix and struggled going into the post season. I'm not sure if it was their poor performance going into the playoffs, or if it was the nagging injuries that still existed with their superstars, or even the fact that Phoenix seemed to focus all their efforts only to beat the Spurs all season long, but I actually picked Duncan and company to lose in the first round to the Suns.
For those who have played with and against me, they would vouch for the fact that I am not flashy and I love playing using the most basic fundamentals. It's mostly because I don't have a lot of talent to begin with and it's the only way I can be most effective. Which is why deep down, I do appreciate San Antonio's game.
But on the surface, I am still a marketing guy and the continued success of the Spurs in not helping the interest level for the league! The pick and roll, the turn around bank shot off the post, and the drive and dish for the three are all plays purists love to watch. But how many purists are out there? These guys (yes all guys) would watch anyway whether the game is fundamental or not. Everyone else prefers the high flying 360 slam dunk, or the no look ally-oop pass, or "the hang in the air until your defender lands before you shoot" shots.
Last year's finals was one of the lowest rated ever in the history of the league. I can't help but think that it's because fundamental (Duncan) dominated excitement (James).