Spurs Driven By Perfection, But It's Not Enough

Spurs Driven By Perfection, But It's Not Enough

There were twenty-one seconds left in overtime during Friday night's Warriors/Spurs game, and the Warriors were clinging to a three-point lead. During a timeout, ESPN's cameras captured Golden State coach Mark Jackson delivering a rousing motivational speech to his troops. "I used to sit where you sit," he rasped, "and after all that work a coach would take me out and bring in somebody to stop; somebody to defend. It was disrespect to me. You earn the right to win the game. You earn the right. Alright, let's go get it."


The Warriors won the game, their first win over San Antonio in five years, and Jackson's talk has understandably received a lot of play in the aftermath. But there was another moment the game that was, to me, even more revealing regarding the participants, though not as obvious. It happened with 3:05 remaining in the third quarter, and even after watching it about a dozen times on my DVR, I'm still not sure what got Spurs coach Gregg Popovich so fired up. 


After Manu Ginobili missed a pull-up transition three, the Warriors pushed the ball back, and as they sped past half court, Popovich could be seen standing near the midcourt line, screaming at someone on the other end of the floor (presumably either one of the refs or one of his players). As the Spurs settled into defensive positions, Warriors PG Jarrett Jack dribble-penetrated into the lane and dished out to Steph Curry at the three-point line. Ginobili ran at Curry, and Curry dribbled around him, into the paint, jumped into Tim Duncan, who had rotated over to cut off his path, drew a foul on Duncan, and converted the layup on the play.




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