Mar 31, 2014, 10:30 PM EDT
Technically, the San Antonio Spurs and Indiana Pacers each have the most wins in their respective conferences.
In reality, these teams hardly anything in common at this point.
The Spurs beat the Pacers, 103-77, tonight for San Antonio’s 17th straight win. It’s the longest win streak in franchise history – breaking a tie with a 16-game streak in 1996, before Gregg Popovich was even coach – and tied for the eighth-longest streak of all time.
The Pacers, on the other hand, have lost 10 of 16 – their worst stretch since Frank Vogel became permanent head coach.
The only way to compare these teams is ask whether the degree to which Spurs are surging is greater than the degree to which Pacers are drowning, or vice versa.
Tonight, The Pacers had more turnovers (15) than assists (14), and they shot 38 percent – extending a historic display of bad shooting.
Every time it seems it can’t get worse for Indiana, it does.
The Spurs, on the other hand, look better than ever. They’re pulling away from the Thunder for homecourt advantage throughout the playoffs, peaking at just the right time.
Tim Duncan shot just 3-for-10 and had three turnovers, but San Antonio is just so deep it didn’t matter. Behind Duncan, the Spurs have kept a steady focus all these years.
As the Pacers are learning, it’s hard enough to maintain focus when under the spotlight of contending for just a couple years.
Next week, maybe the picture looks completely different. The Pacers could be back on track, and the Spurs could look old.
But, right now, these seemingly similar teams are worlds apart.
- Warriors don’t live by 3, die by 3. They live by defense, live by defense 2
- Stephen Curry drops 40, Warriors rout Rockets by 35 to take 3-0 series lead 17
- Hawks Kyle Korver out for remainder of playoffs with high ankle sprain 14
- Report: Scott Skiles in lead to become next Orlando coach 16
- Report: Jeff Van Gundy candidate for Pelicans’ coaching job 15
- Cavs’ improved defense deserves credit for commanding 2-0 Eastern Conference Finals lead 36
- No Kyrie Irving, no problem: Cavaliers cruise to blowout Game 2 win over Hawks 24
- Kyrie Irving out for Game 2 vs. Hawks 7