Blogtable: Are Spurs the faves in 2015?

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


BLOGTABLE: What to do in Miami | Spurs faves in 2015? | Who wants to be Lakers’ coach?



VIDEO: The champion Spurs have some issues to address in the offseason

> If San Antonio’s Big Three all return, and even if sparkplug free agent Patty Mills leaves, given how they played in The Finals, are the “old” Spurs automatically favorites to repeat?

Steve Aschburner, NBA.com: First of all, Patty Mills needs to talk with Gary Neal before he commits to another team with the idea he’ll be as effective – and have as much fun – as a non-Spur. The cash might be greener but the grass seldom is. But no, I think there will be a fairly even distribution of No. 1 predictions in the West – Spurs, Thunder, Clippers – along with Miami as class of the East and therefore a championship threat. San Antonio won’t have the right-that-wrong motivation next season and, logistically, coach Gregg Popovich will have to manage everyone’s injuries and playing time just-so again. The players will have to respond at a best-case level, and so on. In other words, way too many variables to just anoint the Spurs as easy favorites.

Fran Blinebury, NBA.com: At this point the Spurs never go into the season as THE favorite to win it all. That’s simply a matter of Tim Duncan being 38 and Manu Ginobili 37 by the start of training camp. Even with Gregg Popovich managing their minutes, there is no guarantee that their bodies will hold up. But the Spurs have shown consistently for nearly two decades that they’ll always be a contender and, if they’re healthy next April, then they’re the team to beat.

Patty Mills (Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE)

Patty Mills (Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE)

Jeff Caplan, NBA.com: I’ll be shocked if the Big Three aren’t back, and, yes, I’ll make the Spurs my early favorites to repeat (even though I had a healthy Oklahoma City team beating them in the West finals). The motivation for this group is to get the lone accomplishment still out there: Back-to-back titles. They’re toughest competition in the West will continue to be OKC with the Clippers and Houston likely to come back stronger.

Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.comI wouldn’t say automatically, but they would have to be the favorites — at this point. The answer could change completely before the first day of training camp, depending on what other teams do in the summer. But, yes, if the most the defending champion losses is one important reserve while no one else adds anything, they are the favorites until further notice.

John Schuhmann, NBA.com: I’d call them the favorites, but I wouldn’t take them over the field. They’re the most complete team in the league – no team ranked higher in both offensive and defensive efficiency this season – but it still takes some luck (with health) to get to The Finals. And there are a handful of other contenders with room for improvement.

Sekou Smith, NBA.com: Barring a breakup of your core group, a championship teams enters the next season as the favorite in almost every instance. And these Spurs, with or without Patty Mills, will enter the 2014-15 season as my front-runner pick to take home the Larry O’Brien trophy. They’ll have to survive a rugged Western Conference, as always, but they have the components needed to do so better than anyone else. The Clippers move into that No. 2 spot to me and Thunder would follow them on my list of teams coming out of the West and thus becoming championship contenders. But the Spurs remain in that No. 1 spot.

Lang Whitaker, NBA.com’s All Ball blog: The New Adventures of the Old Spurs was something of a revelation in the Finals. The way they shared the ball and played team defense was brilliant, so much so that you feel like they discovered another gear they didn’t know they had. And once Pandora’s Box is open, I don’t know how they put that back inside. The other thing is, if I’m a Spurs fan I don’t worry so much about losing a player, particularly a bench player, because you know the franchise is so great at finding and then developing players to fill these roles.

42 Comments

  1. LaCrampa says:

    next year finals, spurs VS 2015 east random joke : 4-1 or 4-2

  2. Gillsy says:

    Its funny. Manu and Tony are two of the best but most underrated players in the league. While Timmy is one of the best if all time but for years is never high on anyone’s list. It now looks like Leonard is joining this list with people still not thinking he is as good as he is.

  3. kenny says:

    I will have to see trades because i’ve pick the champion before trades before and thin the team traded all there good players away and just on trade can change the whole landscape of the NBA and it doesn’t even have to envole a supperstar to get it done so ask the question after the trade deadline

  4. jack says:

    If the Spurs stay healthy and together they will win another championship next year. Not even bringing Melo to Miami or Houston would do the trick. The Spurs could go for a three peat if Duncan and Ginobili have 2 years left.

  5. ill aka the Frenchy says:

    LBJ where u at!? Can’t see your half boring half funny comments nowhere anymore!

    Ok am a Heat fan and losing is a part of the game game just as winning. So The Heat nation has to deal with just like anybody else. We will comeback stronger next season. Enjoy the holidays everyone. Peace out.

    • LBJ says:

      Playing for the heat will not help LeBron James win championship. He must join our gigantic three Gramps, Big Dog and Frenchie. We will trade future hall of fame sharpshooter Austin Daye and lightning quick guard Corey Joseph. GO SPURS!

  6. ill aka the Frenchy says:

    LBJ where u at!? Can’t see your half boring half comments nowhere anymore!

    Ok am a Heat fan and losing is a part of the game game just as winning. So The Heat nation has to deal with just like anybody else. We will comeback stronger next season. Enjoy the holidays everyone. Peace out.

  7. dd209 says:

    I think the Spurs have a very good chance of pulling it off in 2015. They have great strategy and ball handling.

  8. Go Mavs says:

    I must say that this happens ever year: The defending champions are the favorite to win it next season. And of course, that’s how it should be because at the time they are the best in the league. But we really don’t know what could happen in the offseason. Especially this offseason. Cough, cough Big Three.

  9. M1978 says:

    Spurs will be without any doubts favourites, if the big three stays there. Yes, it’s true that Duncan and Ginobili are old but that doesn’t mean they can not contend. Look at Allen in Miami or Pierce in Brooklyn. They are really good players at the same age. The point is that they can’t carry the load alone they need a strong bench in order to have more rest. So if the Spurs stay healthy they have a great chance to be champions. Remember the 2012-2013 Lakers (Bryant-Gasol-Nash-Howard), they head a similar issue. If all would have been healthy they had maybe won the championship. Unfortunatly Nash and Bryant got injured, Gasol turned out to play really bad, Howard continued to be a little kid without a will. So they simply got swept by the Spurs. The difference is, the Lakers had no bench to compensate and noone could fill the void created by the absence of Bryant and Nash.
    The Spurs have a really strong bench so they won’t have this problem.

    If not the Spurs in the West OKC, Houston could make it (I doubt the Clippers will win anything). In the Eastern conference, the biggest quesiton is about Miami.

  10. Karlo Garcia says:

    As of now,yes because they are currently the 2014 NBA Champions. Regardless how the NBA East & West improves in 2014-15 which will do so, the Spurs will be faves in 2015.

  11. Patrick says:

    Spurs have the most balanced team of the league. They can and will be strong contenders to back to back titles

  12. Alan Hollway says:

    In the entire 16 years of Spurs excellence I don’t think there was any one year where the Spurs were favourites to win it all even in the years after their championship victories so nothing should change next year. The spurs need a few things in their favour to beat the superstars, 1. health throughout the year and in the playoffs 2. they need to play at their maximum team ability which they did this year. The question is will they be motivated to do it all again, they had the motivation this year following their heart breaking loss in 2013. The Thunder will be energised and motivated and still young but they rely upon two few and Perkins is on the way out. Spurs if all goes according to plan otherwise its thunder vs pacers.

  13. SPURS HOTNESS says:

    OKC needs just one more good player. Yeah, okay.
    Pacers will become better. Really?
    Heat will rebuild. Whhaaatt??
    Kobe will return. Who cares?
    Warriors has a new coach. So what??

    SPURS are the #1 favorites, and should be.
    And those who are in denial
    probably did not watch the Play-offs and the Finals.
    The SPURS will also get even better,
    and will have a great chance to get their FIRST BACK-2-BACK Championhips!!

    • BLANK says:

      This year was the best basketball spurs has played. And i doubt they can improve it more next year.

      Still they will continue this kind of play next year. But dont count out the other good coaches who will study their play and probably will learn from it and adapt… Still it would a very tough 2015 for spurs….

  14. tanibanana says:

    If OKC rebuilds their team outside of Durant/Westbrook/Ibaka then I’ll take OKC to win it all…

  15. Mike says:

    How could the champs NOT be the favourites? In saying that, the Spurs were fortunate to have played their first two games against an Ibaka-less Thunder team. As a Spurs fan, I’d hate to think what would’ve transpired had Serge been available for those games. I’m also predicting Steven Adams to be a completely different beast next season. I would love to see Parker get some more rest next season, and more minutes for Patty Mills. Don’t expect Leonard to go out and average 20+ next season just because he’s the finals MVP. He won’t have to and Pop won’t ask him to.

    • kekekek says:

      Naah, it wouldnt have mattered that much. everything about this championship was earned and deserved for the spurs.

      As a knick fan I wouldnt want any other team than the spurs to win it. they were by far the better team.

    • rory ramirez says:

      Would of, could of, should of……If OKC wants a championship, they better get reserves who can fill the gaps. Excuses are for losers. last year they would have made the finals and beat the Spurs if Westbrook had not got injured. This year they had Ibaka out for first 2 games and Spurs took advantage….wa wa wa….Come on OKC… the Spurs beat you all with an injured Parker….who sat out the second half of a critical game 6 in Oklahoma city and beat you’ll by 15 plus points. Bottom line OKC will never be crowned champions until they get some heart and want it more than their opponents. The Spurs have heard excuses for the past 17 years and they have heard them all from Phoenix to LA. last year we blew the championship, but instead of sitting around making excuses, the Spurs regrouped, and went out and took it back. that my friend is the heart of a champion.

  16. FanFrSingapore says:

    Spurs have the strongest bench, which will make them another favourite for the title next year. Coach Pop had the luxury to rest the Big Three a few matches during the regular season. This shows the toughness and trust to the bench players..

  17. fabrice says:

    enuff of miami

  18. John says:

    Guys, this is what you exactly told last season. The Spurs are blah blah blah..Let’s wait and see. Spurs Repeat.

  19. Kimmy says:

    OKC will come back strong because the management will make good decisions. Like get good vets in free agency and lose Thabeet, Sefalosha and Perkins. I have said this since last summer and I’m getting very impatient!

  20. ricz says:

    I don’t know………….. It’s really hard to say they can win it again since they are in the west where even 8 seed can give you a nightmare

  21. pej says:

    In the finals I was surprise how easy the Spur beat Miami by big margin as the series moves on. It means they kept improving their game up to the end. So I conclude next season they could be lethal with offense and defense. They got the blue print almost perfected that next season is the continuity of that championship performance.

  22. Michael says:

    The Spurs are the clear favourites to repeat. OKC’s big three are just that: three players. If you rely on three players to score 80 points and play 40 minutes each, you won’t beat the Spurs in a seven game series. Until OKC can dramatically improve its bench production, they won’t get past the deepest team in the league.

  23. toob says:

    Most will sleep on the Pacers. they learned from their 2013 loss to the Heat and came out as the best team in the NBA for the first half of the season in effort to gain home court. Now they will learn from their 2014 loss and come out even better prepared than before, this time for sustained excellence. They have the talent, all they have to do is “put it together” and “commit to excellence” like the Spurs do. Considering the youth on the team (PG, Lance under 24.. Hibbert, Hill all younger than LeBron) there is plenty of room for them to grow even before you factor in their improving skills as they near/enter their primes.

    sleep on the Pacers. they dont like being the favorite.

    • Tom says:

      lol they don’t have the talent. Terrible to watch and not a legit contender till they learn to score.

    • kekekek says:

      Actually, they dont have the talent, thats their main problem, they dont have a bench, Paul George is not a reliable go to guy when you need buckets. They dont have a point guard that can make plays. t

      Hibbert shows up when he feels like it.

    • en. says:

      Overrratttteeedddd team……..Paul george suks

  24. Seriously? says:

    So when Miami joins forces the first year they are favorites to win. When they win their first championship they are favorites to win next season also. Next season comes along and they barely squeak by the Spurs for the championship and were favorites AGAIN to win the championship in ’13-’14. Then the Spurs DESTROY the Heat and essentially turn the Heats world upside down. Wade looks old and is considering retirement, Allen wants to retire, Battier will retire, James is possibly jumping ship, and Bosh is crossing his fingers that he isn’t left there alone to be in a similar situation that he was in in Toronto. With all that being said the Spurs are not the favorite??? OKC is the favorite? Yea, Spurs beat them pretty handily. Ibaka wasn’t 100% but close enough or else he wouldn’t have played. Clippers? Barely made it to the 2nd round and lost to OKC who were dominated by the Spurs. Indiana? Can’t even beat the Heat. Houston? Let’s wait and see if they can make it out of the first round before even throwing their name in. Portland? Also beaten by the Spurs. All teams in the East are rebuilding or too young to compete with the powerhouses in the West so we won’t even go there.
    The “they are too old to ball” reasoning has been said the past 5-6 years and yet the Spurs have had the best record in the regular season several times and have never not made the playoffs in recent memory.What exactly do the Spurs need to do to get some respect in the NBA???

  25. eugen says:

    I think that next year could be OKC’s year. They only need another good player.

    • RP says:

      They need a consistent bench and improved chemistry. Hopefully they’ll get their chemistry and rhythm back if everyone stays healthy and if Brooks will lay the law down to Westbrook.

  26. Chris says:

    Spurs are definitely the favorites, one year will not make a difference as far as the age of the players. Biggest concern will be health, if everyone stays healthy Spurs WILL repeat. They don’t even need to finish as the top seed, they’re so good on the road it doesn’t matter. FYI, Tony Parker was not at full health in these playoffs, and look what the Spurs did. Imagine if Tony doesn’t play for France this summer and takes an offseason, watch out NBA!

  27. amitpal says:

    I felt healthy okc was better then them this year and I feel they will be better then them next year as well. Its a tuff match up for the spurs and as they get older it only get tougher. Okc athleticism bothers them and out of this spurs team I really only see khawi getting better next year whereas as the thunder almost everyone on the roster will be better including kd westbrook ibaka jackson lamb Adam jones plus 2 new rookies and cap space. Okc has the upper hand right now if they can stay healthy.

    • MR210 says:

      People been counting out the Spurs for over a decade…yet all they do is keep winning games and making the playoffs.
      Perfectly fine flying under the radar…as in years past.
      This year it was supposed to be OKC or Clippers to come out of the West. Look what happened.

      But until Spurs lose in the playoffs or next years championship – Spurs are THE team to beat.

    • educatedron says:

      I respect your post. OKC has youth, but why they won’t win is because of their coaching. Clear out with durant and Westbrook taking turns can beat some teams but not the spurs.

      Spurs will rightfullly be favord.

      And the center who tore his calf off who was out for the hole season. The question really is, what illegal substance was he using to be able to come back in 5 days 100%?

      Westbrook is not coachable, until he’s traded OKC will be a perenial WCF playofff lsoing team

      • RP says:

        Nasty comment. I’m sure he had the usual LEGAL medications to play through the pain but why is their explanation so hard to believe. It was a new injury (final game with the Clippers) and they weren’t sure what they were dealing with until the swelling went down. Once it did they found it wasn’t as bad as they thought. That said, I’m sure if they thought the team could win without him he wouldn’t have played at all. My opinion though is that they had a good shot in games 3 and 4 without him. The bench showed up for those two games.

  28. MR210 says:

    Spurs should be the favorites if the Big Three remains in tact…plus with the rise of Kawhi – BIG FOUR?
    Spurs are good at adding pieces here and there, so if one or to bench players leave – Spurs will be ok.

    But if everyone comes back: Boris/Patty…plus with Danny Green’s sharpshooting and wing defense, Tiago post game developing more on offense and protecting rim on defense – Spurs are no doubt favorites to win.
    They should be favorites until someone beats them.

  29. TheKush says:

    I doubted the spurs this year if they bring back the core unit I won’t doubt them next year! Congrats to the Spurs on a great year. This was a good year for the NBA because of the amount of foreign players the spurs have and to win it all was a great fete that will inspire the entire planet to play more basketball.