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'Twas the Night Before Playoffs

‘Twas the night before Playoffs, and all through The League,

Not a player could sleep, except for Tim D.

The arena was glowing, a thrill filled the air,

In the hopes that the Finals would soon be played there.

Popovich was nestled all snug in his bed,

while nightmares of sangria ran through his head.

And Chip, his brain full of shooting tricks and tips,

Was dreaming of free throws winning the championship.

When inside the Center there arose such a clatter,

The Coyote sprang from his bed to see what was the matter.

He ran to the locker room, saw a light under the door,

Heard voices whispering and shoes scuffing the floor.

Although the exit sign emitted a steady red glow,

The mascot could barely see through the door's tiny window.

When, with huge disbelieving eyes, what should he see,

But David Stern, Esquire, and three wizened referees.

The Commish had dispensed with his usual charm and slick,

And The Coyote wondered why he felt so queasy and sick.

Faster than vultures, Mr. Stern's companions they came,

As he whispered and coaxed them and called them by name.

"Now Joey, now Bennett, and you too, Bavetta,

Now's the time, gentlemen, to satisfy your vendettas.

The Spurs are immune to your threats and ejections.

But can they recover from expert rejection?"

The intruders scattered small slips of paper like leaves,

Media critiques ending in "Ya right" and "Oh, please."

Round and round the room they continued to litter,

Unable to contain snarls, men oh-so-bitter.

And then in an instant they melted through the walls,

Having heard several voices approach from the hall.

As the Coyote's head was still spinning around,

Tim, Tony and Manu entered the room with a bound.

Dressed in all white, from their heads to their knees,

The Big 3 looked down and saw the spread-out debris.

All of a sudden, Manu fell down on his back,

Laughing so hard, he hit the floor with a thwack.

As Timmeh looked about, his eyes all a twinkling,

Tony just sat there, then had a sudden inkling.

A smile broke out, tilted to just the one side,

He shook his head, saying "Can't believe what they tried."

Timmeh quickly decided, right then and right there,

To make sure the rest of the Spurs knew who had been where.

He smiled brightly and turned to Tony and Manu,

"You know what this means and what we now have to do."

The Man with No Swagger stared intent at Tim's face,

"We have to tear through the Playoffs and bring them disgrace."

The three of them huddled, spoke in really low voices,

Planning and scheming, ignoring all other noises.

Pop walked into the room and took one look around,

Observed his star players and knew what they had found.

"I guess I won't need to play mind games this year;

It's the rest of the League that should tremble in fear."

As all the other Spurs wandered in and sat down,

Pop addressed the whole team, without his usual frown.

"For those who don't know, Playoffs are all about will,

And if that's not enough, we have George Jesse Hill."

Apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, whose genius I cannot begin to approximate. Also, many thanks to Lauri and jrw for the extremely helpful edits and comments, even if I didn't incorporate them all.