The San Antonio Spurs have been among the smartest organizations in the basketball world over the past two decades.
More than this leading to a ridiculous amount of on-court success, it has also made the organization among the most respected in the game.
This doesn’t mean that the Spurs fail to talk trash when needed or get in the face of opposing players when appropriate. They just do it on a different level. A smarter level.
Danny Green’s comments regarding the upcoming conference semifinals series against the Oklahoma City Thunder represent this to a T:
Danny Green says #Spurs won't be drawn offsides by OKC: "We aren't going to get chippy or talk trash….That's not how we operate here."
— Tom Orsborn (@tom_orsborn) April 27, 2016
Yes, the under-handed suggestion here is that Oklahoma City enjoys talking trash during games.
This was seen a great deal in the team’s first-round playoff series against the Dallas Mavericks.
In fact, both Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were fined following outbursts during Game 4 of the series.
Durant’s fine of $15,000 came in the form of a flagrant foul-2 on Mavericks wing Justin Anderson after the former MVP knocked Anderson in the head.
Meanwhile, Russ was fined $25,000 for an inappropriate comment to a fan.
These are just the two latest examples of the Thunder showing a bit of a hot-headed mentality — an example that was furthered after Durant called Mavericks owner Mark Cuban an “idiot” following the series.
If the Thunder hope to get into San Antonio’s head, that’s simply not going to happen. Gregg Popovich will make sure of it. The team’s veteran-laden roster will also make sure of it.