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League Darlings

By Daniel Strickland on December 3, 2008.

“I knew what it was going to be out there, and I didn’t want our team to fall into that. We knew how it was going to be, especially going against the league darlings.”
-Rasheed Wallace, Detroit Pistons Forward

Game 17: Pistons 89, Spurs 77

Maybe he has been smokin’ again1. I don’t know. But I can say without hesitation that Rasheed Wallace is out of his fucking mind if he thinks that the Spurs are the “league darlings.” And you can tell him I said so.

Maybe Wallace hasn’t checked out the official NBA website. Or maybe he’s never read any of the numerous NBA-themed magazines. If he had, he would know that the league calls teams in Boston, Los Angeles and Cleveland, not San Antonio, its “darlings.”

Maybe Wallace is pissed that Tim Duncan got the better of him tonight, in every statistical category but one.

Duncan 23-13-2-1-1
Wallace 19-5-0-1-0

Maybe Wallace didn’t hear about Tim Duncan’s run in with referee Joey Crawford, not the kind of preferential treatment you would except for a league darling to receive.

Maybe Wallace is still bitter about losing the 2005 NBA Finals to the Spurs. He must not recall the stories about low TV ratings, how no one wanted to watch the Spurs-Pistons series, except die-hard Spurs and Pistons fans. Maybe he’s forgotten, too, how his Pistons were only the second best team in the East that year, lucky to even be in the Finals thanks to a Dwayne Wade rib injury, as they were lucky tonight playing against a recovering Spurs team whose superstars aren’t yet back to 100% after injuries.

The Spurs have never been, nor will they ever be league darlings, despite what Rasheed Wallace says or thinks. And that’s just the way we Spurs fans like it.

1Not that there is anything wrong with that. In fact, seeing how marijuana is not a performance enhancing drug, it shouldn’t be a banned substance in the NBA. And for the record, some of my favorite players have been stoners.

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