Spurs news and notes: McDyess on his retirement, Carlesimo on Pop, and more

• San Antonio Spurs’ Antonio McDyess might reconsider retirement after this season:

“If I could play here another year,” McDyess said, “I would definitely contemplate it.” (source Express News)

• Former Spurs’ Assistant Coach PJ Carlesimo – now an assitsnt coach with the Toronto Raptors – gave his two cents on why the Spurs are so successful and said where Spurs’ coach Gregg Popovich got the blueprint for his coaching style:

Carlesimo, now Jay Triano’s lead assistant in Toronto, spent five years under Popovich and had a front row seat for one of the most finely tuned machines in the NBA.

“Primarily it’s because of Timmy and 1A because of Pop,” Carlesimo said, pinpointing the reasons for the success when he was there.

“I’m prejudiced by I think (Popovich) has been the best coach in the league for a long time.

“He’s had two of the best players in the league and he’s had a lot of other good players with them but so have a lot of coaches who coach teams in the league.”

But ask Carlesimo the model for the blueprint and he believes it is Jerry Sloan’s early days in Utah.

“Pop will be very candid about it,” Carlesimo said. “He modelled it on Utah.” (source torontosun.com)

• Express News’ Tim Griffin talks about the plus-minus totals from Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker.

• NBA.com listed it seven surprises in the 2010-2011 NBA season and the Spurs made the list:

The Spurs return: Coach Gregg Popovich can keep saying that his team really has to tighten down on its defense and shouldn’t be mentioned as the best team in the league. Tim Duncan can maintain that the Spurs haven’t proven anything yet.

But when you’re a league-best 35-6 at the halfway mark, it says your championship window is anything but slammed shut. It started with Richard Jefferson as a more comfortable fit in his second season in San Antonio and then it grew with a healthy Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker. Mix in the fact that Popovich has been able to keep Duncan’s minutes to a career-low so far and they’ll be tough to take down come springtime. They are no longer the grind-it-out Spurs … they now push the tempo, take the first good shot they see and deliver knockout punches from behind the 3-point line. Want another pleasant surprise? Try 26-year-old rookie Gary Neal and his sharpshooting.

• NBA.com also gave out its midseason report card on the Spurs:

After they were swept out of the playoffs in the second round by the Suns, many thought the window of opportunity had slammed shut on the Spurs. But here they sit with the best record in the league at the halfway point.

It helps that Ginobili and Parker are not bothered by injuries for the first time in years. But the comfort and production levels reached by Jefferson in his second year with the team have also been significant.

The key stat so far is that Duncan is logging a career low in minutes, saving him for the playoffs. At 34, the Spurs are no longer asking him to be the tent pole that holds up everything. They’ve switched from pounding the ball into the low post to scoring in transition and taking the first good shot. As a result, that window to win the West stays open.

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