Wow. That was an impressive 3 wins.
I don’t care what team you are or what team you’re playing: to win 3 games on 3 consecutive nights is impressive. After playing ugly (but with energy and some urgency) and winning last night, the team came back home and played a mostly sterling game against a very good team. Philadelphia is a tremendous defensive team, using their athleticism to swarm and disrupt opposing teams. We flipped the script on them, using our army of long-armed, tenacious athletes to get blocks, steals, deflect passes, and generally make offensive life difficult for the Sixers. And while they were able to mostly do the same on us, midway through the 3rd quarter our offense clicked into place and we ran away with the game.
This is the second night in a row the team has shot horribly from 3-point range. While we never want to shoot that poorly, it is encouraging that we are still winning (and our offense is still running smoothly and efficiently) without the good shooting. In the last few years, we certainly died by the 3 when we weren’t living by it. It’s still a critical part of the offense, but it’s no longer the crutch upon which the offense rests. Look at our roster: we’re no longer a collection of specialists. Pretty much all players on the team can do at least 2 or 3 things very well in the offense (including passing), even Matt Bonner, who has a quirky but underrated driving game. We’re deep and multifaceted.
It’s actually a little scary. Don’t look now, but we’re running away with the Southwest Division, putting distance between the #2 seed and the rest of the field, and even staying close enough on OKC’s heels to make it interesting. Standings and numbers aside, the team looks like the deepest, most athletic team we might have ever had in the Tim Duncan-era. In his prime, Duncan’s brilliance erased a lot of mistakes and patched a lot of holes. As Duncan had gotten older, the team had slowly declined because those holes started to poke through. But now we seem to have patched things up with talented (and cheap) role players.
Do we have a legitimate shot at this thing?
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