Don’t be fooled by the seemingly successful season for the San Antonio Spurs this season. It’s the end of the line for a great run that started with the drafting of the once in a generation talent, Tim Duncan. As usual, the general sports media (better known as the sports MSM doesn’t want to notice and doesn’t want the public to notice either).
There is turmoil in San Antonio, the team only won 14 games on the road and were routinely thrashed away from the AT&T Center. Poor road records in the NBA are usually the result of having a young and inexperienced team, the Spurs are the second oldest team in the association. There was also the Kawhi aspect.
Kawhi Leonard is one of the five best players in the NBA, NBA Finals MVP in 2014 and All-NBA First Team his last two full seasons. Team doctors cleared Leonard to play long ago, but he’s out for the season. Supposedly it’s Leonard’s personal doctors advising him to not play, but we’re not hearing anything from Leonard himself. What’s troubling is Leonard has not been in Oakland the first two playoff games cheering his teammates along. The Spurs have been trounced both games and Leonard is nowhere to be seen and the Spurs are cagey in their responses to why.
This all goes back to Gregg Popovich, he’s been an ass with the media for years and years, but the media loves his politics. He recently claimed, “we live in a racist country that hasn’t figured it out yet”, and routinely spouts out his white apologist rhetoric. His “it doesn’t matter. People have to be made to feel uncomfortable, and especially white people, because we’re comfortable. We still have no clue what being born white means” is his now classic white apologist rant from last year, which the media, especially the likes of The Intercept, GQ, Rolling Stone lapped up. Many of the sports media also routinely look for Popovich to tell them his takes on the latest goings on in the White House. Whenever Popovich lambasts Donald Trump, it’s been an immediate sports headline.
Popovich has treated the sports media with disdain for years, his recent postgame comments after the Game 1 loss were the usual for him. Amazingly, the sports media continues to give him a pass even when he embarrasses reporters routinely, mostly because the Spurs were winning titles, but now it’s mostly because they agree with his political and social views.
The Spurs dynasty is crashing down, they won titles when they got Tim Duncan and haven’t won a title since Duncan retired. They are most likely now going to have to move Kawhi Leonard this off-season (overall, the sports media has really not investigated the real reasons for his absence this year), which will be a huge blow. Leonard is entering his prime and will be a difference maker for whoever can land him.
The media continues to soft ball Popovich and the top Spurs’ brass, but looking at how the season has gone, I personally wouldn’t be surprised if the Spurs start next season without Kawhi Leonard or Gregg Popovich.
- Harish Narayan