The Disgrace of Cheap Shot Rob and the San Antonio Spurs

Martin BlackContributor IJune 2, 2008

[written after Game 6 of the Spurs-Hornets Western Conference Semifinals Series]

Of all the weeks for Robert Horry to once and for all leave no doubt as to what he and the Spurs have become. In the same week that brought us Annika Sorenstam and Justin Henin walking away from their sports at the top and as winners, the best the men have to offer is “cheap-shot Rob.” What was formerly a proud man and a winner with a career worthy of being proud, Robert Horry has finally been undeniably exposed as a loser. His total relevance as an athlete has now come down to hip-checking Steve Nash into the 2ndrow, being the primary substitute to employ the “Hack-a-Shaq,” and last night to the delight of the San Antonio Spurs fans he took down David West. Of course one can argue that the play was not illegal and not even worthy of a flagrant foul, but make no mistake, that play was dirty and with malice intended. The Spurs knew West had an ailing back and Horry seized the moment (with the Spurs up by 20) that has become the only way for him to generate cheers from his “fans.”

How disgraceful to be Robert Horry, how disgraceful of the people of San Antonio to chant Horry’s name while David West lay in pain on the court and finally, how disgraceful to be part of the San Antonio Spurs. Please understand, this is exactly who the Spurs are. Yes, they have had some proud moments during this four out of nine championship run, but at what cost? Bruce Bowen is certainly an extremely gifted defensive player; however, do not let this overshadow the fact that he crosses the line of being “dirty.” Bowen’s past is littered with numerous instances of “intent to injure” that have been proven and other times questioned. Manu Ginobili, despite his many gifts as a basketball player, personifies all that has gone wrong with the NBA game. His flopping on defense continues to get worse and worse, but what is even more annoying is when he is on offense and is barely touched he goes down as if he has had his arm ripped off! Tony Parker and Tim Duncan – just play! Use the God-given talents you have been blessed with and quit your whining on every call. While I do believe that Greg Popovich is a very good coach, the fact that he condones all of the above would insinuate that he is a proponent of the win at all costs attitude. Why else would a coach continue to fill a roster spot with a broken-down and useless Robert Horry?

No doubt the Spurs have become winners, but is that all there is to it? The careers of Annika, Justin and Brett Favre have proven that you can be a winner and you can have honor. Robert Horry has become a caricature similar to the goons that used to be on NHL rosters only for the purpose of starting fights. Horry brings us the image of the NFL’s Conrad Dobler biting somebody’s fingers after a tackle was made. I am pretty sure that the Spurs will win Monday night’s Game 7 and although David West will play he will definitely be less than 100%. We will then be forced to listen to analysts, announcers, talk radio hosts and others telling us how wonderful the Spurs are and what great “winners” they are. What a pity, what a shame, what a disgrace.