Nov 27, 2013; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) handles the ball against San Antonio Spurs power forward Tim Duncan (21) during the first quarter at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Losing Has Refocused The 2013-14 San Antonio Spurs


Since Tim Duncan‘s first year in the Alamo City, the San Antonio Spurs have never endured a slide of more than six games. Conversely, San Antonio has reeled off several lengthy winning streaks, such as their 19-game run spanning Feb. 26-April 2.

The Spurs have only dealt with one losing streak all year, dumping contests to the Miami Heat, Houston Rockets and Chicago Bulls. With the postseason approaching a few factors favor San Antonio, who has only lost twice in back-to-backs all year.

There are no back-to-backs during the playoffs and the Spurs won’t have to worry about playing three times in four days like they did at the end of January (which is when their only skid of the season occurred).

Consistency Personified Due To Development, Drafting, Free Agent Signings

San Antonio is 14-2 this year after losing, with just Houston and Chicago able to thwart the Spurs following blemishes. The Memphis Grizzlies look to become the third squad to crack that code Sunday.

San Antonio’s perfect by no means, but they’re consistent (boring to some). They have rattled off 15 consecutive 50-win seasons and 17 straight playoff berths since the No. 1 overall draft pick out of Wake Forest, Duncan’s, arrival to the NBA.

How have the Spurs been able to build on top of each year without ever rebuilding? By tinkering the roster a little with player development, smart drafting and free agent signings who fit San Antonio’s system and philosophy.

With guys like Danny Green (cut by the Cleveland Cavaliers), Manu Ginobili (58th draft pick) and Marco Belinelli (formerly of the Bulls) the Spurs have been able to surround their sturdy foundation Timmy quite perfectly.

All the aforementioned have talent and are coachable which are key fabrics San Antonio also possesses from top to bottom of the coaching ranks and organization. When a player gets too big of an ego or doesn’t fit the system he either finds a spot on the bench or is shopped out of town.

If Spurs Don’t Endure Another Losing Streak An NBA Title Is Likely Theirs

As I said earlier San Antonio’s just encountered one skid all year. If that remains to be the case the Spurs will win a fifth NBA championship during 2014.

How am I so certain? San Antonio remains ahead of the Oklahoma City Thunder for home-court advantage throughout the Western Conference and postseason.

Even if the Spurs falter at the Minnesota Timberwolves, to the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers San Antonio would finish the year 62-20 which would mean OKC (even though the Thunder won all four meetings with the Spurs) would have to go 7-1 down the stretch to claim the West’s No. 1 seed.

The only way I could be wrong is if San Antonio falls in Game 1, Game 3, Game 5 and Game 7 during a series which seems highly unlikely because that would mean the Spurs would have to lose Game 3 on the road as well as three at home in a series during one of the first four rounds of the playoffs.



Tags: San Antonio Spurs