How important is getting the No. 1 overall seed to Spurs coach Gregg Popovich?
“No team would turn it down, but it’s not necessary to win a championship,” Popovich said Sunday before his team went out and lost to the Lakers. “Teams win championships with the best record, with not the best record. If you’re the best team you win on the road and become the champion.”
After the loss to the Lakers the Spurs chance of getting the top seed in the West became very slim (San Antonio would have to win its last to, Oklahoma City lose theirs), so his move Monday night against Golden State should not be a surprise.
Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard are all going to sit out for the Spurs Monday in Golden State.
Outside of Duncan, the Spurs seemed off their game against the Lakers — Los Angles played with far more energy and the Spurs didn’t knock down shots they normally hit. Parker was even missing his patented rainbow floater in the lane. A little rest to get their heads right might help. But the Spurs need to do something because they are 5-5 in their last 10 games and generally have not looked like a title contender the last couple weeks. We’ll see if they turn that around when the games matter.
Yeah, the Lakers lost to the Rockets, 134-95, Wednesday. But consider how lopsided that margin would’ve been without Lou Williams‘ halfcourt buzzer-beater.
And if this headline looks familiar, it is.
LeBron James did his part – scoring 25 points (on just 10 shots!), dishing seven assists and grabbing six rebounds – to give the Cavaliers an insurmountable lead over the Knicks through three quarters. So, he didn’t even play in the fourth quarter.
As Cleveland put the finishing touches on its 126-94 win, boredom set it. LeBron and a few of his teammates tried to flip a water bottle and have it land upright on the floor. LeBron even dove onto the court to pull the bottle back in after an errant flip!
No, Phil Jackson should not have used the word “posse” to describe LeBron’s business associates and friends. But this is the most disrespectful thing I’ve ever seen – and I love it.
The Mavericks’ long-rumored interest in DeMarcus Cousins took its most direct public turn before the season, when Dallas signed Cousins’ brother, Jaleel Cousins. Jaleel is now on the Mavericks’ D-League affiliate, and I bet he will remain there as DeMarcus approaches 2018 free agency.
Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News:
So, DeMarcus Cousins, what do you think about the Mavericks’ long-rumored interest in acquiring you?
“It’s flattering,” Cousins told me, with a laugh, after the Kings’ Wednesday shootaround at AAC. Then, turning serious, he added of the Mavericks, “I respect them.”
“But,” I said, “I’ve also heard that you like it in Sacramento.”
“No,” Cousins corrected, “I love Sacramento.”
Cousins is getting good at this, toeing the line between appreciating another team’s interest and expressing his satisfaction with the Kings.
And give Cousins credit. He keeps producing at a star level for a team that hasn’t provided him with the proper support. Sacramento again appears headed toward the lottery, even as Cousins averages 29-10.
Questions remain, though: How much of Cousins’ attitude is him trying to make the best of an inescapable situation, and will expanded options in the summer of 2018 test his loyalty?
LeBron James is dominating, and the Cavaliers are rolling over the Knicks.
It’s almost as if something has LeBron particularly riled up. But maybe ease up a little? That cowering fan isn’t Phil Jackson.