The San Antonio Spurs are the 2014 NBA Champs, but according to ESPN LeBron James and the Miami Heat make for a better story. The Heat basically got their asses handed to them in the 2014 NBA finals, yet no one seems to care outside the state of Texas – at least it appears that way.
Most sports fans would admit with zero hesitation that the Spurs are an old and boring team, while true “NBA heads” can respect their commitment to team play which adds emphasis on getting the ball to the open man no matter who it may be. The Spurs ran circles around the Miami Heat and Erick Spoelstra couldn’t find an answer to counter the offensive and defensive strategies orchestrated by the great Greg Popovich.
Fast forward a few months later, the Spurs appear to have gotten stronger while most of the elite teams in the Eastern Conference have gotten weaker. The Miami Heat have lost their franchise player in LeBron James, the Indiana Pacers lose Lance Stephenson to free agency and Paul George to a gruesome leg injury; which leaves the Bulls or the Raptors as the next best team in the conference. Neither team would create significant issues for the Spurs in my opinion, although I really like the Bulls’ chances with a healthy Derrick Rose.
The Spurs also made some notable off-season transactions and acquisitions that should only strengthen their Kung Fu grip as the top seed in the Western Conference. The question in basic form is this – will the San Antonio Spurs repeat and win back-to-back NBA titles?
If you’re a Spurs fan seeking that warm and fuzzy feeling or even that slight sense of validation, then I would say yes, the Spurs are definitely the favorite to repeat, barring their core players remain healthy. Even if the Spurs suffered the loss of a key player or two, they have a knack for finding and uncovering tremendous talent within players you probably never heard of. How many teams in the league have a rotation as thorough as the Spurs? Don’t waist your time attempting to answer that question because the answer is ZERO.
As always, there are several teams that could provide issues for the Spurs, three such teams reside in the Western Conference ( OKC Thunder, Dallas Mavericks, and L.A. Clippers ). The Dallas Mavericks gave the Spurs serious issues during the playoffs and I am sure they will be on their radar as the postseason approaches. The Clippers could be the team to beat in the West, I like their chances as I expect them to leave the whole Donald Sterling saga as a thing of the past. They have a new owner in Steve Ballmer, so I am expecting a whole new swag from a team I picked to advance to the 2014 NBA Finals. Despite their shortcomings last season, if there is any team I expect to make a big splash this season, it should be the Clippers.
Here’s a basketball fact — the Spurs have never won back-to-back NBA titles. Take a look back at the NBA title history and sure enough you will notice that they have a pattern of winning in the finals, failing to repeat, then winning another title. Could the Spurs use this fact as motivation for a repeat? Things that make you go hmm.
Overall, from a competitive standpoint, the advantage goes in the Spurs favor. Arguably, they have the best coach in the NBA, a legitimate NBA star in Kawhi Leonard, and undoubtedly one of the greatest power forwards to ever play the game in Tim Duncan. So you can call the Spurs old, slow, and boring — but don’t forget to call them an NBA dynasty. Hate it or love it, the Spurs are en-route for a repeat.