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Tony Parker says Gregg Popovich is not happy the Spurs have won 18 in a row

Apr 1, 2014, 1:14 PM EDT

Gregg Popovich, Tony Parker AP

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will be quick to correct any reporter who asks if he is “happy” with a player or the way the team is performing. Coaches are never happy, they are always worried in Popovich’s world.

So no, he’s not happy with the Spurs 18 game winning streak.

He’s been there before — the Spurs won 20 in a row including sweeping through the early rounds of the playoffs in 2012, only to have the Thunder overwhelm them in the conference finals.

No reporter who follows the Spurs is going to ask Popovich if he’s happy, so they asked Tony Parker instead, reports the Indy Star.

Point guard Tony Parker couldn’t help but be amused when asked how Popovich is handling the Spurs’ 18-game winning streak — a franchise record set with ease in Monday’s 103-77 road win over Indiana at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

“I don’t know. I think he’ll be happy if we lose any time soon,” Parker said.

Someone uttered the word “sabotage.” Parker laughed and said, “I’m pretty sure. He’s going to rest like half of the team.”

The Spurs will lose a game or two before the playoffs for just that reason — Popovich cares more about having his players rested for the playoffs than the team’s record. Which is easier to do when the Spurs are going to have the best record in the West anyway.

Right now the Spurs are at the top of their game, executing better than anyone in the league. He should be relatively happy. The question that should keep Popovich and Spurs fans up at night should be this: Is the best the Thunder or Clippers can play, with all their athletes, better than the best the Spurs can play? Those other teams are not there yet, but what if?

  1. ProBasketballPundit - Apr 1, 2014 at 1:26 PM

    I don’t like calling it a “franchise record” win streak when they won 20 in a row a couple years ago. So what… the playoffs just don’t count? Don’t they actually count for much more?

    • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:02 PM

      I wouldn’t count the last, say, 5 games of a season into a streak – most teams have stopped trying by then.

      • money2long - Apr 1, 2014 at 4:23 PM

        interesting.
        and people say teams pick it up after the all star break. so how about we dont count the games before the all star game, nor the games toward the end of the season. pshh the games are the games. im with pundit

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 5:09 PM

        No. Those games are different – and at least the starters are still playing. By the end of the season teams with their playoff seeding locked up have packed it in, and players that aren’t on playoff teams are already on vacation. So you can count it towards a streak if you want, but it wouldn’t be legitimate.

      • money2long - Apr 1, 2014 at 8:02 PM

        I guarantee if lebron James dropped 55 points with a triple double on a team ur describing in the final game of the season, you wouldn’t stop short of delivering flowers and candy to his door.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 8:17 PM

        He rarely ever plays the final game of the season – that’s my point.

      • money2long - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:09 AM

        Reply to me when rarely means never

      • antistratfordian - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:09 AM

        It might as well be never. He’s only played the final game of the season once in his career while on a playoff team – in 2007.

      • money2long - Apr 2, 2014 at 9:20 PM

        Ur logic is super flawed and sad.
        Do those teams come to play ?
        Did that lebron less team go into the game saying we want to lose ?
        So let’s take those games u say should count.
        How many of those come against tanking teams ?
        Or teams with injured stars anyway ?
        Ur so sad.
        The game is the game.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 2, 2014 at 9:51 PM

        Why not count preseason games then if you feel so adamant about it? They amount to the same thing.

        But this really isn’t something to argue about – it’s been long established that teams pack it in for the last few games of the season. This is not a new idea.

        But if you want to count those games toward a streak, that’s fine. Go crazy. I don’t take those games seriously, though. For the most part, whatever happens in those games is completely meaningless.

      • money2long - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:31 PM

        U don’t deserve a basketball reply.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:56 AM

        You didn’t have one anyway.

      • money2long - Apr 4, 2014 at 12:53 PM

        I can say the same about your brain

      • antistratfordian - Apr 4, 2014 at 2:27 PM

        You just unwittingly contradicted yourself in the space of 8 words – and no one is surprised.

      • money2long - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:00 PM

        Ur not surprised .. U need a brain for that to happen.

    • gentlewomansquarterly - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:27 PM

      The record is for the regular season. The streak of 20 games began in the regular season, but 6 of those games came in the post season. That would equate to 14 game streak of regular season wins.

      • gentlewomansquarterly - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:28 PM

        I’m sorry 10 of those games came in post season…which is well impressive.

  2. ragingmouse - Apr 1, 2014 at 1:29 PM

    Watching these guys play is like listening and watching a beautiful symphony !

    A true class act…
    I hope they get another ring.

  3. bucrightoff - Apr 1, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    There’s only one thing in this world that makes Popovich happy: Merlot….lots and lots of delicious Merlot.

    • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:00 PM

      He’ll be up to his eyes in it again this offseason.

      • bucrightoff - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:42 PM

        Thumbs up or down vote time: More annoying troll: Antistrat or Cantonbound? Up for Anti, down for Canton.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:03 PM

        I’m only “more annoying” because I hit on more truths – like when I said back in February that Evan Turner was going to kill Indiana’s offense. That got people fired up as well.

        Sorry for being so accurate all the time.

      • ranfan12 - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:23 PM

        No, you’re annoying because you make sense occasionally, but spout nonsense more often.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:32 PM

        Just because you disagree doesn’t mean it’s nonsense. Like my comment here about Pop drinking away the pain this offseason – how is that “nonsense”? He’s been doing it for 6 straight years now. It is, in fact, most likely.

      • ranfan12 - Apr 1, 2014 at 5:56 PM

        I’m not saying I disagree. I’m just saying most of the things you say don’t seem to make much sense to people here lol

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 6:29 PM

        That does not surprise me one iota.

      • anthonyuy5 - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:26 PM

        anti just seeks the attention he sorely lacked or lacks of at home

      • bucrightoff - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:29 PM

        I worry for Anti’s health. Between the damage his knees must get from being on them all day for LeBron to the back pain he must experience from patting himself on it way too hard, he’s must be constant pain.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:34 PM

        Eh. That was a poor retort – completely lacking in originality.

      • bucrightoff - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:40 PM

        It wasn’t a retort to be funny. I’m legitimately concerned. Spending that much time on your knees is going to give you arthritis. And your back is never a joke.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:43 PM

        You’re just making it worse. The first law of holes, bucright…

      • money2long - Apr 1, 2014 at 4:28 PM

        i think you guys are getting to anti now. i can tell.

  4. apkyletexas - Apr 1, 2014 at 2:36 PM

    One thing that’s killed them in past years is they get just to this point, right before the playoffs, and suffer a huge injury.

    If they can avoid the big injury, I like their chances. Their efficiency ratings on both sides of the ball are incredible.

  5. themagicfanguy - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    No. You’re both annoying, and the “hit on truths” thing is just laughable. If trolling was a job you’d be making minimum wage.

    • money2long - Apr 1, 2014 at 4:32 PM

      someone needs to make an all star, olympic style PBT troll team. including a bench and coach.

  6. pharohislife - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:16 PM

    Stephen A. Smith made a good point saying he doesn’t think Coach Pop would mind if the streak ends because he doesn’t want his team getting too content leading into the playoffs, thinking winning will just come easy and if they just show up they will be able to just beat whoever. Winning teams sometimes get too comfortable. That’s Pop’s concern.

  7. chaseutley - Apr 1, 2014 at 3:45 PM

    The Spurs are the Sixers of winning.

  8. Bryce - Apr 1, 2014 at 4:18 PM

    Popovich is after perfection. Winning games is just a by-product.

    • azarkhan - Apr 1, 2014 at 5:38 PM

      Interesting comment. Popovich would rather have the Spurs play the game right and lose than have a sloppy team lacking in fundamentals that wins. I can definitely see that in Popovich.

  9. kb2408 - Apr 1, 2014 at 4:47 PM

    Look for Pop to sit his entire roster for 2 games due to injuries, and call up 12 D-leaguers.

    • spursareold - Apr 1, 2014 at 5:35 PM

      You can’t actually do that, but if you could, he might.

      Sean Elliott has hinted over the last two or three telecasts that if SA took care of business against Indy (done) and GS, that certain players may not get on the plane late Wednesday to go to OKC.

      It’s another league setup, just like Miami last year. SA played Monday, and has a first game of a B2B on Wednesday before the Thursday OKC game. Meanwhile, OKC gets three days off leading into the Thursday game, just like Miami had last year when Pop sent most of the starting lineup home.

      • cineserv2014 - Apr 1, 2014 at 9:25 PM

        The Spurs regularly face a scheduling disadvantage from the NBA against better teams. Go back and research the Spurs at Miami over the last 3 years and see what I call relative rest/home days. The Spurs have played at Miami with a major disadvantage in rest and travel each time by at 2 days difference. This week the Spurs played last night at Indy, Wednesday at Home against the Warriors and then Thursday in their BTB against OKC. OKC’s schedule a home game against Utah last Sunday. Relative rest/travel: Spurs -1, back to back and travel, albeit short and OKC +4, three days off at home, no travel, metric OKC +5, a HUGE advantage from game and travel schedule. This metric can be affective in betting at least against the Line and potentially outright winner. If the Spurs do win at OKC on Thursday it will truly be ‘against all odds’, leaving the betting to clearly favor being in OKC’s corner at least on the spread. This happens regularly throughout the year as the Spurs have at least 2, perhaps 3 – 5 games in 7 nights, check some of the other contenders on 5 games in 7 days? Not so much. Our great and powerful Oz-like Spurs truly overcome and dominate more than you might realize.NBA is handicapping many of the Spurs.

  10. cineserv2014 - Apr 1, 2014 at 8:51 PM

    This, if true about Pop is about the most ignorant thing I can think of as any real postion from him, and I tend to believe it is for show. First Pop spends all of his energy working with and designing along with their GM a collection of talent to compliment each of ther pieces to win, he creates a mindset and culture of selflessness to win and become as deep of a team 1-14 as possible and then he creates offensive and defensive concepts and plays to maximize his collective genius to win as many games as possible. And he has succeed in doing so for more than 16 seasons and in this particular campaign his and his player’s efforts have lead to 18 straight wins and now someone is casting the idea that he wants to lose one for what, so his team doesn’t get complacent? Not becoming satisfied with where he or his players are is already part of their mantra, so losing one game wouldn’t somehow make them better. And if you keep winning when is one loss in the regular season or even in the playoffs somehow going to ‘correct a ship’ that isn’t broken by losing a game. Isn’t the goal to win every game if possible? Does he have some particular game in mind to lose to get his team to regain an edge they clearly already have? This entire concept of I will be glad when we lose one is completely counter to the mental toughness and confidence he has instilled and his players bring through their success on their own? Completely assinine in the premiss. No one loss to break the streak will make them better. The only time this team will get complacent is after their fourth win in the NBA finals series so give this crazy ass idea up already.

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