Walk Tall

This will be the longest of my very few posts at PTR, hope it is useful to folks surrounded by the enemy and haters in general. (My best post is this video I shot of Spurs/Warriors at Oracle in 2011 when I sneaked a cam into good seats.)

Concerning the current situation:

Wow! Lights-out shooting by them. What is supposed to happen is that, over a seven-game series, jump shooting teams like this suffer a regression to the mean, an attrition because of the law of averages ... but these kids - Durant in particular - are showing wicked skills.

The great charge that the Spur haters are getting from the exuberance of youthful Thunder, is partly 'cause they don't miss. It's crazy. But we have to stay calm, not get rattled. More contested shots and more aggressive defense will generate results ... they'll start missing.

That said, it's a 3-game series now and we have home-court advantage. Pop's adjustments over time are not going to be the issue. If anything, Pop has more control and a better game plan. The problem here is execution and particularly on the defensive end.

You guys at the AT&T Center need to make a lot of noise and get into the heads of these kids. If it's true that the Spurs need to muscle them a bit in Game 5, bump 'em, bruise 'em and hurt 'em a little to break their rhythm, then you fans at the game (and a possible Game 7) need to do everything you can to get them frustrated, annoyed and out-of-sorts.

Danny Green has been absent in this series offensively, it's killin. I think Pop was smart, smart, smart to keep DeJuan Blair out as long as he did - he's going to be fresh when others are fading. I would like to see Blair and Green on the court at the same time. I think you might see Blair 3d (drive, draw, dish) and Green find the stroke.

Last night, Tony was limited to 12 points and 4 assists! This wasn't just because of defense (though 2 blocks against) but because their offense had Tony out of rhythm.H e was chasing at one end, picked off repeatedly and behind and it affected his offensive production, too.

Our work has to happen at the defensive end because the fast-break points and endless jumpers are having a deleterious effect on our offense. Tony couldn't get anything going because there were so few transition opportunities.

Diaw is making me nuts. Up, down, Up, down. He was useful against the weak sisters, Utah and the Clips, but the vaunted "special language between him and Tony as Frenchmen" is long gone in the face of these crazy long arms of the Thunder. Time to bring him in later in the game to pound and enforce. I know he is soft-hands big man, but I mean he should use the physical play as a tactic to get space to hit those sweet jumpers and make the excellent passes he makes. He needs to bang first, and maybe even off the bench. I'd rather start Tiago with Duncan, actually. But Pop knows best.

I'm a Spurs fan since 1974 when I moved to San Antonio. I went to many games at Hemisfair and throughout the 80's when I lived in Texas. I now live in the San Francisco Bay Area where I'm one of the only Spurs fans. I wear a Tim Duncan home white jersey every game day. Yesterday, I wore it to AT&T Park for the SF Giants vs. Cubs game that was nationally televised on FOX.

I want people to see us everywhere because we are as big a dynasty as the Lakers in this century, and you see their purple-and-gold everywhere. I encourage other such far-flung fans to wear their gear this week and stand tall in the face of criticism. Win or lose they have to see us.

This isn't the first time I've been a Spur fan amidst haters.

In 1999, I lived in Brooklyn and wore the colors during the Finals against the Knicks. Of all the places I have lived while supporting the Spurs over the last 38 years, New York was the worst. A lot went down, but it culminated in the story I tell about how when we beat them (even after they tried to cheat with broken shot clocks), and finally won our first Larry O'Brien, I went out into the street in front of our little rented row house and yelled, "Yeah! Spurs!" - just those two words. A few hours later, as my girl and I were in bed, we heard a huge crash - someone threw a brick through the window in our front door.

When I was back down in San Antonio in 2000 spring I kissed the Larry O'Brien trophy when it was at Walzem Mall (my mom distracted the guard 'cause you're not supposed to touch it). It was awesome to finally win.

I lived in Los Angeles when we faced the Lakers in 2002 - 05 and that wasn't any picnic either. Jerks, but in a different kind of way. Nobody likes us or our style of play. They don't care to get into it, and fear fundamental basketball.

Along the way, I have learned a few things about how to carry oneself as a Spurs fan in this East-Coast-Major-Market-Biased world we live in.

1. Pop leads by example. I love to use the steely-eyed stare and telling people when they are stating the obvious about players and coaches and our history that we have known for years. I never bend or back down - don't need to stick the Spurs in your face, but we don't back down.

2. When you know it's going to be a long series and home court is everything (we learned this the hard way and fought to take it the past two years), lay low the first few games so you can start a slow-building full-on support when it's needed most. Today and tomorrow are going to be a drag because people want to hate us. (I was walking with my kid and guys were yelling pro-Thunder crap at us at an SF Giants game!) They like telling us we are wrong about our team when they have the numbers ... let 'em ... this is last man standing time and we don't quit.

3. Wear your colors with pride and walk tall. You don't have to say anything - it's better if you don't. Pop and the Spurs will do the talking. But one of the reasons people push us around is because not enough of us outside San Antonio wear our colors.

4. When you're outnumbered, don't get into it with 'em. But when you're not outnumbered slam them with every single detail you can remember about our awesome, storied franchise. Beat them into the ground with facts. They're never going to get it from anywhere else - no espn, no tnt, no newspaper where they live discusses us the right way. It's up to you.

5. Stay strong and be proud of our Spurs no matter the outcome. We have the best organization in professional sport, the best coach, the best power forward, one of the best point guards in the game, the deepest bench ... and Manu.

all right, those are my thoughts

Walk Tall

Go Spurs Go


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