The Larry O'Brien trophy isn't the only thing driving this year's playoff field. There are deeper driving forces beneath the surface, and Derek has uncovered them all just in time for tip-off.
[caption id="attachment_5740" align="aligncenter" width="680"] Jun 20, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich talks with San Antonio Spurs power forward Tim Duncan (21), point
Why be outraged by the Spurs when they are such an aesthetic delight.
Kawhi Leonard isn't just trying to be a star NBA player; he's trying to do that from within a uniquely structured NBA entity.
"I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look, or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun."
Such lofty preseason expectations for Kawhi Leonard were never fair. The popular assumption that the high-motor, mild-mannered Leonard would usurp Manu Ginobili as the third wheel in the San Antonio machine this season was always naive, a result of kneejerk NBA Finals judgments and the belief that time was finally catching up with the Spurs.
I have a secret to tell you.
Nine months ago, the San Antonio Spurs watched confetti fall from the rafters at the American Airlines Arena after the Miami Heat held off their best efforts to secure their second championship in a row. Two nights before that, 19.4 seconds and one rebound was all that separated them from winning their fifth title in the Tim Duncan era.
While playing in Italy, Matt Bonner once drove through a bike race.
Matt Bonner answers readers' questions in the Hardwood Paroxysm Matt Bonner Mailbag.