San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich has no fear of complacency from his veteran trio of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili as they embark on their NBA title defence.
At a media day on Friday, on the eve of training camp, Popovich said it’s the younger players who are more likely to fail to grasp just how hard it is to climb the summit again.
“They’re not going to try to take a victory lap,” Popovich said of his big three. “They’re going to come ready.
“It’s the other guys, the young kids, thinking it might be easy – just expect it’s going to come, not realise you have to go back to the beginning and not skip steps and start all over again.”
That’s a concept Popovich said he would emphasise as camp gets under way – not that the Spurs feature that many youngsters.
Newly drafted rookie Kyle Anderson is a likely contender to be on the opening day roster in October.
But with the deal completed on Friday with Aussie Aron Baynes, the last remaining unsigned member of last season’s title-winning squad, the Spurs insured they can bring back off of the 2014 title team.
Despite the advanced ages, in basketball terms, of the team’s core – Duncan is 38, Ginobili 37 and Parker 32 – general manager RC Buford said during the off-season he saw no reason to make many changes.
“This is a group that has great chemistry, that’s at its best playing together, in a style that fits that group,” he told the San Antonio Express-News.
The veterans have dealt with heartbreak as well as triumph, having come back to win the 2014 crown with a five-game demolition of Miami a year after surrendering a 3-2 championship series lead and falling in seven games to the Heat.
Ginobili acknowledged that the 2014 Spurs were fired by the devastating failure of 2013, and will have to find other motivation this season.
“Now we are going to have to bring it again after a great satisfaction,” Ginobili said. “It’s going to be a great challenge.”
Tim,Ginobilli,and shorty Tony go spoil there.hope they defend d title.