Monday, March 10, 2008
Most of the discussion concerned whether O’Neal would help or hurt the Suns. Would he fit into their style of play, or would they alter their style to suit him? Would this be a personal quest for him, a chance to play in the same conference with rival and former teammate Kobe Bryant? If the Suns were to best the Lakers, would it settle the question once and for all about which player was most responsible for the Lakers’ three consecutive championships to start this decade? Does Shaq have enough diesel left in the tank to fuel the Suns to the finals? All of those questions have yet to be answered, but opinions are getting a little firmer.
The most amazing thing about these basketball conversations isn’t what’s being said, though. It’s what is not being said. Which team is the reigning NBA champion? Which team has won three of the last five NBA titles? Which is the only Western Conference team besides the Lakers to win championships this decade? The San Antonio Spurs.
The Spurs have a mini-dynasty going, and people just don’t seem to notice. David Robinson, Tim Duncan, Eva Longoria’s husband, that household name Manu Genobili all are superstars who have contributed to the Spurs’ amazing run of success. Yet, aside from the international acclaim Tony Parker received from marrying a beautiful TV star, the Spurs somehow seem to slip by essentially unnoticed. They are athletic, intensely competitive, clearly well-coached and proven winners. Yet, they’re not flashy. They go about their business without really calling attention to themselves. They make their home in a relatively small market which doesn’t draw big TV ratings.
With all due respect to Bryant, O’Neal and all of the Dallas Mavericks, the “other” team in the west is still the team to beat. They are the champions until somebody beats them. Now, that’s worth talking about.
Sphere: Related Content