Seth Warren, a Spurs fan in Colorado Springs, sent me a great recap of the championship festivities. His recap, along with his photos, are below. Thanks Seth!
Not sure if you were able or not, but I was blessed to get to fly down for today's parade and ceremony at the Dome. Just wanted to give you a quick update from SA if you haven't already heard.
The parade was great, but actually seemed somewhat diminished in spirit from 2005. I don't know if because it was ridiculously scheduled for a Sunday night, or because we're simply getting accustomed to winning, OR because we'd been drinking margaritas in the sun all day; either way, it didn't seem to have the turn-out as the 2005 parade. None-the-less, it was magical, and the Express-News estimated attendance at around 300K.
This team is truly a special bunch, even with Eva clinging like a virus. From Finley's emotional speech to the crowd, to Bones' everpresent jokes that seem funny until you realize they make no sense, to Timmy's constant humility and praise-deferring, to Tony's quasi-french jibberish about 'borrowing' the MVP, to Pop's 'We kicked ass' followed by a quick apology to the kids; it was great. Wonderful weather, great spirit, hellish humidity. Awesome to see guys like Fencepost Vaughn, Fran 'Strong Amaechi-vibe' Elson, and Red Rocket get their due.
The event at the Dome was great too. After several meaningless introductions/thanks from local politicians who, in a grand attempt to appeal to their districts, led the crowd in cheers; we finally were greeted by a ceiling-repelling Coyote and a caravan of trolleys carrying the team.
MCed by the Dirty One, and with all 4 trophys and the MVP on stage, it was hilarious. You could feel how close this team is with each hug and joke and wisecrack. In a weird way, it was somewhat sad as a die-hard fan to take all of this in and realize how lucky we were this year. We literally will be looking back on this team years from now and realizing that this was the best SPURS team, and arguably one of the best title contenders ever to play the game. Hands down. There aren't ANY primadonnas or potential rapists or drug trafficers, or even any individuals. The suns and mavs and all other posers can claim endlessly to have more individual talent, but as long as basketball remains a TEAM game, we'll remember this year's SPURS and appreciate the Dynasty that Pop and R.C. have orchestrated.
In addition, it's impossible to sit in on something like this and watch the interactions with the players, and come away objectively thinking that Bruce Bowen is in any way dirty, or a jerk. We were close to all festivities and I was very interested to see each players actions towards the other, and wanted to catch little things that most fans miss. Bruce is one of their emotional leaders and it was clear to all in the Dome that he's extremely respected and valued. Overall, the celebration left myself and most of the other 45K in attendance literally feeling proud and overwhelmed to be San Antonio fans. Long story short, Finley got emotional at the prolonged standing O for him and the trophy had to be pryed from his hands; James White made an appearance in a sombrero and danced off the stage to wide-spread cheers and laughs (he sat next to Timmy on stage the entire time and you could tell that he and TD had a closeness and a friendship...IE: GOOD SIGN); Big Shot was the ONLY person on the stage not wearing a Championship T, and acted rather distant during the event (I'm feeling even stronger now that making a deal with Satan to get more rings than Jordan has finally taken its toll); Manu talked in Spanish to rave reviews as I pretended to interpret to the other white people around us ("I hate being called Obe Wan Ginobili. Cut it out. It's retarded."); Bruce described each player in a heartfelt way (interestingly except the Bean Burrito, whom he simply dropped cliches about and if you were betting, made subtly clear would not be returning), and Tony DIDN'T rap in his native tongue. This was discouraging in that I hope it's not a sign that all the praise is going to his head. The love for Flight White is definately palpable though, and we're likely to see him again next year judging by how well the team reacts around him and how well received he is.
We came away with several basic points:
-Michael Finley is a class act, a hard worker whom you can't help but bow to for finally winning a ring (and on a side note it's awesome to have visual confirmation that there is absolutely still NO bad blood between he and Bruce. I welcome him back to repeat.).
-I'm even more sure now that Timmy will go down as one of the 5 best players/highest character athletes of ALL time.
-Nearly every member of this team, unlike previous years which I think is good to see, commented on their strong desire to repeat next year.
-Fab can actually articulate sentences, to the shock of even the Argentine fans.
-Bean Burrito likely won't grace us any longer with his complete lack of hustle or basketball IQ.
-Suprisingly, Flight is almost the 'ham' that Bruce is.
-Bones' children nearly knocked over several of the trophies and will at some point require prescribed medication.
-The SPURS dancers (or 'Nitro Girls,' as my girlfriend referred to them) will soon be wearing literally no clothing at all.
-The 2006-7 San Antonio SPURS are the best example of a 'team' in any pro sport of the last 15 years.
Attached are some pics from the weekend. Parade pics, and pics at the Dome celebration. Pay special attention to the 6th one.
Yep, that's our boy with the sombrero on the left!! And yes, on the right a good view of Big Shot acting very disinterested and bored. I realize that I may be being critical, but he's just starting to seem bored at this point and even my girlfriend noticed. If he decides to hang it up this year, after watching his body language during the weekend and realizing that we have enough players who can eat at Golden Corral for a discount, I'm not sure that I will be upset. With this group, we literally could make only several minor losses (Burrito, Jacque, Horry, Ely, maybe Bonner, Butler, maybe Bones) and come back to dominate the playoffs again. This team is that tight. Plus having the Big Three helps, too.
Sorry for the rambling, just couldn't wait to share. With you being already in Austin at that point, we definitely need to schedule an event next year for PtR at the repeat celebration. Keep up the good work Matt and Stampler, and congrats to all in the Kingdom of Dynasty, and GO SPURS GO!!!!