The San Antonio Spurs kick off their 2012-13 regular season tonight versus the New Orleans Hornets in New Orleans. The team remained pretty much in tact only adding guard Nando De Colo in the offseason.
Yet despite the lack of many offseason moves, the team got in a full training camp (which will help players added late last season) and are raring to go according to Boris Diaw.
Diaw (via French site Sudouest.fr) says the team is ready but the nasty taste of losing in the Western Conference Finals still lingers.
It feels good, everyone is ready in San Antonio. There are still some resentment from the playoffs last year because we were not far from the title (note: eliminated in Conference Finals by Western Oklahoma). But the Spurs plays for the title every year and with the team experience, again, it has the potential to go as far as possible.
If the team is going to go far, they will have to do it without much size. Diaw, who at times will play the center spot, will carry the bulk of manning the paint along side Tim Duncan but he knows his role on the team.
This is a different team from Phoenix where I was a focal point. In San Antonio, Tony (Parker), Tim (Duncan) and Manu (Ginobili) have their roles there.
Indeed the Spurs will go as far as the "Big 3" take them. Health will be key and so far, it hasn't gotten off to a good start. Manu will sit out of the season opener against the Hornets. In fact, he didn't travel with the team. Hopefully, this will just be a blip on the radar and Ginobili will be back on the court soon.
Diaw also spoke highly of De Colo and says the Bulls, Celtics and Nets could challenge the Heat in the East.