Carlisle: ‘This is by far the best team in basketball’

Tonight the San Antonio Spurs will face their I-35 rival Dallas Mavericks and Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle had this to say about the Spurs:

“This is by far the best team in basketball,” Carlisle said after this morning’s shootaround at American Airlines Center. “They have been all year long.”

“They’ve just been extremely consistent; they’ve been healthy all year, very efficient, terrific at both ends and it’s culminated with a great record for them,” Carlisle said. “Every seven games if you look at their trend — whether it’s from the previous seven — you get a different list of guys that are the leading scorers, and the order changes a little bit.

“I believe they’re the only team in the league that has nine guys averaging 20 or more minutes. So that tells you about their balance and the fact that you really can’t key in on one particular guy.”

Of course Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich differed about his own team:

“Is he trying to be tricky again?” Popovich asked. “Ricky, what are you doing? He’s by far the biggest exaggerator I’ve ever seen. He’s being quite disingenuous.”

“I wouldn’t want to play Dallas 15 times in a row,” Popovich said. “That would be difficult. I don’t think I’d want to play Dallas followed by the Lakers followed by Denver every single night. It’ll be nice to have a night where you can relax a little bit, truth be known.”

I’m sure just once Spurs fans would love to hear Popovich come out and say “Hell yeah we’re the best team in the NBA!”

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