Come on, who are you more afraid of? The 250-pound muscle-head in the tank top with barbed wire tatted around his biceps, or the quiet dude with the tucked-in shirt who's been calculating your every move?
I guess it depends on how much the first guy bench presses. But even so, its not always the loudest one in the room that's the scariest. The Spurs are boring, and that makes them dangerous.
You won't see the bench jump off the pine for chest bumps, or the crowd's jaws drop in utter excitement when Tim Duncan sticks a 15-footer or Tony Parker pulls up over a ball screen. Although it would be pretty damn funny to see Matt Bonner, Gary Neal and Stephen Jackson erupt off the bench in disbelief of a Duncan bank shot.
I just don't trust the Spurs—in a positive way. You get the feeling they're always up to something, like that antisocial kid who sits in the back of every classroom.
Duncan is playing his best ball in years. Tony Parker's scoring average has gone up every year since 2009. Why? I have no idea. But that's what makes them so scary.
Why shouldn't you fear this team? Manu Ginobili is healthy, Stephen Jackson's head looks right, Tony Parker is in the prime of his career and Tim Duncan looks as fresh as ever.
This team might be old, but they're certainly not slow. The Spurs rank second in the NBA in pace according John Hollinger's rankings. This is the nursing home from hell—seniors and vets who stay strapped with turbo boosters on their walkers, springs on their canes and jet packs attached to their cardigans.
They also rank in the top five in both offensive and defensive efficiency. Gregg Popovich's feel for the game is unparalleled amongst NBA coaches. The guy just has an answer for everything. I'd let him coach me through a stomachache.
Popovich's player-resting stunt, though criticized by some, shows he's got his eyes set on the big picture. A healthy Spurs team means a healthy opportunity at a title.
When we think of NBA title contenders, we always mention the Spurs but never take them seriously. It's only natural to see electric athletes like LeBron James and Russell Westbrook and assume San Antonio isn't physically capable of handling that type of athleticism. We think of the Spurs more as roadblocks than a team with a realistic chance.
If there was ever a team that would randomly win a championship without anybody picking them to contend, it has to be the Spurs.
But the moment you start to think of San Antonio as the old guy, you become vulnerable to their sneakiness and intelligence. Fear the boredom.