I am big on championship DVD's. I used to even watch those NFL Yearbooks of every team that aired on ESPN2. However, I feel like the rise of YouTube has lessened my excitement. Which is a bummer. I've already seen the micro movies from each game and some great fan videos put together about the Spurs. What more can the championship DVD add?
The Perfect Championship DVD would start with David Robinson sitting in a church. You can barely make out his surroundings and the only light comes through two stained glass windows above him. He begins to speak. He tells of the Spurs former glory and quick cuts flash to images and videos of the four championships. Then, a somber organ begins to play. The camera shows Manu's gimpiness in 08 and 09, Richard Jefferson burning a Spurs flag in Steve Nash's living room in 2010. Past playoff failures are shown. Robinson tells of the doubt that all fans felt. Insert Stephen A. Smith laughing about Skip's persistent prediction of the Spurs to win it all. The somberness grows, a cello and violin begin to cry. In black and white you see it, Ray Allen's three. Timmy's floor slap.
Cut to talking heads saying the Spurs are finished. David then says, "but Pop and the Spurs had other plans." A faint sound of a joyous gospel choir begins to rise. Light shines behind David, revealing the chorus. Avery Johnson begins to lead a rhythmic clap in the Soprano section. Clips of the Spurs season begin. The Rise of Marco, Patty's evolution, Tim's drive, Manu's resurgence and Kawhi's improvement. The claps get louder, a woman with an Aretha type voice takes over in a solo and we see the beauty that was beating Dallas, Portland and OKC.
The choir begins to hum softly as we see Tim's interview following the OKC series. "We got four more to go and we'll do it this time." The chorus then takes those famous words to a song. David gets up and begins to dance in the illuminated church. "We got four more to go and we gonna do it this time, O LORD, four more to go, but we gonna do it this time!" I am getting chills! The finals play out through highlights as the choir exuberantly chants Tim's words.
Lastly, the hallelujah chorus echoes as we see the Spurs hoist the LOB. Cherokee Parks gets a guitar solo in the choir. David is seen in the church, smiling with his big grin and says "You gotta always keep the faith."
And that's just the intro. If I keep going, I'll only get so excited that I will either pass out or resent the actual DVD for not using my idea.
Tim Opting In
Well, Old Man Riverwalk is back for another year, maybe two, maybe ten. I sometimes think he's a Terminator waiting for John Connor to be born. Tim Duncan could be the guy to launch SkyNet and I don't think I could be mad at him. He's given me so much, he has every right to take it all away too.
It seems like the Spurs will go for a new model, continuity. It's funny how every year for the past seven I have wanted the team to be blown up. Last year, even though the Spurs were 28 seconds from a title I thought we were dead in the water if we didn't sign Al Jefferson or Andrew Iguodala. The Spurs knew better, they knew that 28 seconds from a title didn't mean detonate the whole thing. It meant that this roster just had to be 28 seconds better. And the continuity didn't make the Spurs just seconds better, it made them a masterpiece.
It will be exciting to see them defend a title with the same squad, assuming they retain Patty and Boris. In 2000, Tim was hurt and made that a throw away title defense. In 2004, the squad was completely new. No David Robinson, no Stephen Jackson, no Speedy Claxton, no Steve Kerr, no Steve Smith. It was actually pretty miraculous that the Spurs got as far as they did with such a new cast of role players. Truly shows the dominance of
The Terminator Tim Duncan during those years. The 2006 team never seemed to completely gel, I don't know if the addition of Michael Finley and Nick Van Exel screwed up the rotation, but something was off about that title defense. Even though they posted a best ever record and were a Manu foul away from the WCF. In 2008, the role players were just too old.
With Tim opting in, it guarantees us to see a title defense where the cast stays consistent. Especially since that consistency will come from the squad who just played the best team basketball we've ever seen. The team is also extremely young minus Manu and Tim. But, we've established Tim is a cyborg and if it weren't for Ginobili's hair we could assume he had been lying about his age all along and actually started playing for the Spurs when he was 14.
I think this will be the hungriest team to ever defend their title. JR Wilco compared Kawhi now to Tim from 99-03. Will he be that driven to succeed? All indications of his complete gym rattiness point to yes. Leonard's declaration to "live it up" at the Spurs parade probably meant he'd stay up past 10 a few nights a week, do donuts in his Malibu and finally eat a breakfast taco. Kawhi could taste how sweet a championship was. That was obvious through his post game interview and embrace with Pop. Someone as competitive as he is isn't going to forget that taste.
Danny Green seems to want to float on another river parade too. I think this title defense will come down to health (obviously) and how hungry the Big Three are. They wanted it so bad this season, will they be able to repeat that? Tim opting in is a start I guess, because if he wasn't starving for more championships and basketball, why wouldn't he of just retired?
Watching the World Burn
I love the NBA draft, maybe more than the NFL draft. Simply because it's completely chaotic. More than any other event in sports, the NBA draft is an invitation each June to watch a complete catastrophe.
You get to watch the ineptitude of GMs who take Anthony Bennett and teams from New York make really dumb decisions. All that being said, I was so miserable during last years draft. I wanted to roll in laughter about the Cavs, I wanted to eulogize the nine minutes we had Nerlens Noel and Anthony Davis together and I wanted to pick apart the stupidity of the Big Arthritis team formed in Brooklyn. But, I couldn't. It was impossible to enjoy because of the crushing loss in the Finals.
So if last year's draft was that miserable because of the Finals loss, how great will it be this year because the Spurs are on top? And I don't even care what happens. I feel like The Joker, I just want to watch the world burn. I want to watch the Timberwolves shoot themselves in the foot and trade away Love for pennies on the dollar. Preferably not to the Warriors. I want to see the Kings get Doug McDermott and see Demarcus "Boogie" Cousins power bomb him through the Gatorade table next year when McDermott helps someone up off the court. I want to see a Mormon rebellion over the fact that the Jazz won't trade up for Parker. Please Nets, trade the rights for every draft pick until 2026. Isn't anarchy awesome?
The draft has always made me so thankful for the Spurs. For one, they've historically gotten lucky in it (David Robinson & Tim Duncan. For two, they've historically been smart in it (Tony Parker & Manu Ginobili). For three, they've historically been just risky enough with it (foreign players, drafting George Hill, Trading George Hill). For four, they haven't fallen into the anarchy. The draft is probably way less fun for a fan when you have to watch YOUR world burn.
Croatian sensation Dario Saric, was too scared about the possibility of not playing for the Lakers or Celtics and has decided to sign a three year deal with Turkish club Anadolu Efes. People say Saric is the most versatile offensive player in the draft. Foreign, versatile, competitive...I smell a Spur. Now, I am not sure if Saric will officially sign the deal before the draft, but if he does he can still be drafted. He just won't be able to play in the NBA for two years.
I'd really love to see the Spurs trade into the low 20's if Saric is still there. I am hoping that so many clubs in the 'Win Now' mentality overlook him because they can't afford to stash him. He's 6'10, a passer and wouldn't eat up immediate cap room. I don't know who the Spurs could trade to get a chance at him, but I'd throw the house at whoever. Landing Saric would be like landing a top 10 pick, maybe top 5 in a really week draft. Plus, he'd be able to come over right when Timmy and Manu are phasing out. Saric alongside Tony and Leonard, coached by Pop, yes please! Croatian LeBron.
Rooting against the Milwaukee Bucks
In college my friend and I got in argument about what teams were doomed forever. I got pretty fired up and made a bet with him that the Milwaukee Bucks would NEVER win another NBA championship. I didn't give any stipulations or have any rewards that I could possibly obtain. I just firmly believed that the Milwaukee Bucks would never win it all again.
So I feel like I have something riding on Milwaukee screwing up this draft. I can't have them hit a home run and ruin my bet. I have this image of them taking Embiid, Wiggins or Parker and those players turning the Bucks into the basketball Mecca. I mean, nobody thought San Antonio would ever be the basketball Promised Land. So, for the sake of me winning my end of an extremely arrogant bet, please Milwaukee...screw this up.
The Spurs put together the greatest run imaginable this postseason. Epically beating Dirk again, taking out the leagues best young team, getting revenge on OKC and getting revenge on Miami. It was like a movie. So what would be a great playoff run for next year? I'll tell you my dream scenario for a repeat championship run.
Round One: Spurs manage minutes all season and go in as the number 4 seed against a revived Los Angeles Lakers. Tim Duncan takes out Kobe Bryant uno mas. Four games to one. Kobe kisses Tim's feet as time winds down in game six, finally admitting Duncan's superiority.
Round Two: The Spurs play back to back series in the Staples Center. This time against Clipper Darrell and the gang. During the offseason, the Clippers dumped the salaries of DeAndre Jordan and Jamal Crawford in order to sign the Spurs mortal enemy...LeBron James. The Clippers cast is more driven and less decrepit than the 2014 Heat and puts up a great fight. However, Kawhi Leonard is just too strong once again. Spurs win 4-3 on the court at Staples. San Antonio moves to 3-1 all time against King James. Welcome to the West LeBron.
WCF: Spurs beat Rockets 4-0. The Rockets and Spurs have never played in the playoffs during Duncan's tenure. Tim laughs Dwight Howard off the court again. The Rockets also have Carmelo Anthony, who goes 3-45 in the closeout game in San Antonio.
The Finals: On draft night 2014, the Chicago Bulls trade Taj Gibson, Tony Snell and a plethora of picks to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Love and Kevin Martin. Derrick Rose returns to MVP form and basketball euphoria returns to the Windy City. The Bulls sweep through the Eastern Conference and meet the Spurs in the Finals. Tim Duncan just will not let Kevin Love have any ground in The Finals, annihilating him and going onto win his sixth title and fourth finals MVP, 16 years after the first one. Chase for Seis over, Aggression for Seven begins.