Home / NBA Finals Game I, San Antonio Spurs vs Detroit Pistons

NBA Finals Game I, San Antonio Spurs vs Detroit Pistons

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Everybody thinks slow.

I think the squads will be surprisingly up-tempo.

Of course, I’m talking about the cheerleading teams.


After successfully predicting a Spurs-Piston final series (and a 4-3 split in favor of San Antonio) it is here now.

No doubt about it, the game will be slower than a snail sliming across a dead tortiose.

And still it will be more interesting than watching baseball on TV.

No secret, no surprise, that defense is No. 1 – and No. 2 in the minds of people who think the game is gonna stink higher than Mariah Carey’s scream after stubbing her toe.

As someone handily pointed out to me yesterday, Detroit and San Antonio led the league in least points allowed. Defense.

Sure the Spurs showed they had offense – but that was against the Phoenix Suns. The Suns were powerful enough and talented enough to control the tempo, but they weren’t good enough to win. Against the Pistons, San Antonio will play down to their speed, their game. Though the Spurs are very good at not playing down to the level of the competition, remarkably so, the Pistons are that good and it will be slow.

The Spurs players who will step up big: Brent Barry. This is exactly why he came to the Spurs – to win a championship. He’s a class act from way back and lit it up for the Seattle Supersonics in a spectacular way. Met him. Like him.

Bowen will not be as effective against players just like him, but he will have clutch threes on the offensive end.

If Devin Brown is in, the Spurs are desperate. Ditto Glenn Robinson, though he deserves better.

Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili. Tony Parker. They’ll just bring it. All are riding high – especially Manu who has rediscovered his offensive prowess.

Robert Horry is an X – factor. He’ll have some key shots. He may have many.

Nazr Mohammed and Beno Udrih may be the deciding factors. Their output is unpredictable, but it is there. If they both are able to step it up, it will be a coast for the Spurs.

Others: Tony Massenburg. Rasho Nesterovic

For Detroit, Chauncey Billups is riding high. Expect Coach Brown to let him step it up and show everyone what’s he’s got. At least in Game 1.

The Wallace twins will be interesting to watch. I think Rasheed will be able to reign it in for the finals and become extremely focused and deadly. Ben Wallace? Unsure. He’s going to have a tough job but he’ll be very capable.

Richard “Rip” Hamilton will have to step it up – even higher to overcome the Spurs. When defensive powerhouse matchs defensive powerhouse, the results are often amazing.

Tayshaun Prince will be the disappointment of the series for the defending champions. No real reason; obviously just a hunch. He just looked dogged and resigned at the end of Game 7 against Miami.

As spoken of in another thread here, this won’t be the 1994 Knicks finals.

Elden Campbell has more abilities than he’s shown. Of course there’s no reason to suspect he’ll start showing them now, but he might. Ditto for Antonio McDyess, though I think he’ll be cool under pressure.

Others: Carlos Arroyo. Ronald Dupree. Darvin Ham. Darko Milicic. Lindsey Hunter.

Spurs win it in 4-3, though I would be voting for Detroit to lose solely because a certain contingent of the fans are undeserving. I’d be rooting for the Spurs anyway because of Tim Duncan – the man just gets it done.

Hopefully everyone on both teams is healthy, because when defense is played this well, offense doesn’t seem so special …. … …

And for me and my interest level? Put it this way – it’s the first Finals I will watch since The Seattle Supersonics played the Bulls in 1996. When I lived in Seattle and was loving me some Shawn Kemp and Gary Payton synergy.

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About temple

Always been a writer, always maintained an interest in politics, how people communicate and fantasy worlds within photography and books. Previously wrote for Blogcritics back in 2005 and interested in exploring the issues and topics I'm interested - the changing landscape of entertainment. all from the POV of a creator first, consumer, second.
  • Temple Starks writes: And still it will be more interesting than watching baseball on TV.

    Reply: That will also be true, (presumptuously) my friend! I am always amazed why television people think this will be a poorly-rated series because no “big market” teams are involved. You have:

    – the best player in the NBA (Duncan)
    – two of the best coaches in NBA (Popovich, perpetually ignored) and basketball (Larry Brown) history
    – perhaps the best “team” basketball by 5 average players (Detroit) since the Bird/McHale/The Chief, etc. Celtics
    – and you have Rasheed (wink)

    I agree with you, it will be the first series I will enjoy in several years. And I don’t have a clue who will win.



  • L.A.W.

    As with everthing else, if it doesn’t have to do with L.A., I don’t care. I was hoping to see Shaq back at the finals if for no other reason than to rub his success in bitch-ass Kobe’s face. The Pistons/Spurs finals are going to be a drag. I mean…who cares about either team…or either city for that matter?

  • Matt

    Seems like a good analysis, except that I pick Detroit 4-3. What I found unusual was the following:

    “though I would be voting for Detroit to lose solely because a certain contingent of the fans are undeserving.”

    Show me a sports team where there is not a “contingent of underserving fans”.

    You saw the worst Detroit fans in action, and admit it or not every team has and equal amount of ignorant loser fans. It seems like kind of a silly reason to root for one team over another, but, to each their own.

    In case your wondering I am from the “proud and deserving” Detroit fan contingency.

  • “- perhaps the best “team” basketball by 5 average players (Detroit) since the Bird/McHale/The Chief, etc. Celtics”

    How is Bird an average player? Or even McHale for that matter?

    Ben Wallace isn’t average either as the reigning defensive player of the year. I think a more accurate statement would be the 5 players who aren’t superstars or who don’t score more than 20 ppg.

  • Tan Hoang writes: How is Bird an average player? Or even McHale for that matter?

    Reply: Just my individual, single, unpopular, generally-widely denied, unbiased, uneducated, simplistic, opinion. You make a good point.



  • Detroit and San Antonio are both big markets. They’re two of the US’s 10 biggiest cities by population. Boston’s considerably smaller.

    Pistons in 5. Just like last year.

  • Ron, well if you compare Bird to Magic, then he does become kind of average – they equalize each other.

  • RJ

    Dude, good post, but those typos need to be corrected…

  • RJ

    “I mean…who cares about either team…or either city for that matter?”

    Wow. What a moronic thing to type…

  • Thanks. fixed. They were pretty brutal in the post weren’t they. no excuses .. but i was in a huge hurry this morning and wanted to get it up on the site because I knew I wouldn’t be near a computer until after the game. Right about now in fact.

    I’m working on another post.

  • RJ

    It’s cool. I feel like a dick whenever I point out a type or the lack of an Amazon link, but it needs doing, right? :-/

  • RJ

    *typo 😉

  • Jose

    I have mixed feelings about this “dull series” topic. Why is it that good defense is applauded in football, baseball, soccer, etc but moaned about in basketball? Why is it that more and more the fundmentally sound players in other parts of the world are whipping the butts of the run & dunk, loud and self-centered American youngsters? I was a bit frustrated with the pace of Game 1, but when the camera started showing closeups of the action, I was amazed how multiple defenders were attacking the ball when someone tried to go for a shot or a dunk. You’d see all these hands come up and touch the ball, sometimes deflecting it, sometimes not. Maybe if the announcers would show some of this, break it down, explain it like they do in other sports, the game would be more enjoyable, so we would be entertained by watching very talented athletes do incredible things, on offense and on defense. The offensive explosion, when it came on Game 1 in the 4th quarter from Ginobili, was that much more enjoyable when you realize the Piston defensive barriers he had to overcome to do what he did. It was a more complete game than a pure dunk-fest, and in the end, I think I enjoyed it that much more.

  • What Jose said. Great comments.

    Surprisngly – and not related to the fact that it’s this series – I found myself wishing for a few more instant replays of certain calls – and they didn’t have them. Usually when I watch I find myself thinking – too many replays.

    But there were a lot of close calls that I didn’t see in Game 1. Maybe they lost use of a camera????