[disclaimer: these are the postgame ramblings of a disgruntled cheerleader. please treat them as such]
My fellow Pounders, I have a confession to make. As some of you may know, I don't handle losses very well. I say all the right things (in fact, my facebook status is an extremely generous congratulations to the Thunder), and appear composed, but inside I'm usually a world of turmoil. I was 11 when I first wept after the Spurs were eliminated from the playoffs (back in 2000 at the hands of the Suns) and freaked my mother out. I know it's just a game, and I know the outcome has no bearing on the sun's rising or setting the next day, but when you spend so much time following, respecting, and pulling for a franchise that represents itself and your hometown with such aplomb, it's hard not to be crestfallen when the end, almost ineluctably, comes.
I wanted to write this fanpost while the feelings of being denied a shot at a 5th title were still fresh and raw. Previous years, I would "take my ball and go home," so to speak, by going into hiatus from all things basketball and all things sport, to be honest. Call me a masochist, or maybe I feel like I've finally found a safe haven in PtR to express my true feelings regarding the Spurs.
I'm annoyed, Pounders. I'm annoyed at the Spurs for allowing the Thunder to dictate the way the series would be played. I'm annoyed at the media for propping up the Thunder prematurely as experiencing an inevitable "changing of the guard" with the Spurs for dominance of the West. I'm annoyed that the game didn't seem to be called fairly on both ends of the floor for long, critical stretches of multiple games. But mostly, I'm annoyed that a team with a 20 game winning streak all of a sudden lost 4 in a row.
Let us rewind to game 2--the last game this season in which San Antonio played unabashed, beautiful team basketball. Does a team clicking on all cylinders like that suddenly forget how to move the ball? Does switching Sefolosha onto Parker really serve to nullify the overwhelming team ball that SA had played for the past 50 days? How does a team that was among the league leaders in committing the fewest fouls all of a sudden fail to consistently stay out of the penalty against the best free throw shooting team in the league?
These are valid questions right now, and even as we attempt to answer them in our own disgruntled heads, I remain steadfast in my belief that the better team wins a 7 game series. The question is not whether that team would have won anyway, but rather did they require the red carpet being rolled out on their behalf to do so? Another question, to be answered another day.
As always, I'm proud to be a Spurs fan, proud of this organization, and proud of the classiness and professionalism the Spurs show even in defeat. And I'll wait another year to see if those indomitable traits pay off tangibly for Timmy and Co. just one more time.............