It might be the single moment in San Antonio Spurs franchise history that may hang over like a dark cloud for years to come – seeing a lead in Game 6 of the 2013 NBA Finals slip through their fingers as well as title number five.
San Antonio was up five points with 28 seconds remaining on the game clock in the fourth quarter and the rest, as they say, was history. Miami would tie the series at 3-3 only to go on and win the championship in the decisive Game 7.
Since then, many Spurs player have been haunted by what could have been. It has been weighing on their collective minds and as the team enters a new season, head coach Gregg Popovich isn't letting the players forget what happened.
During Tony Parker's French radio show, he stated Pop showed them video of Game 6 in a long video session if anything to supply them with motivation heading into the new season.
Via French site BFM TV:
"[W]e watched the Finals again. Gregg Popovich has shown us Game #6 during a long video session (laughs). The coach was not happy. He wanted to anger us, motivate us and remind us that we had come very close last year. If we do the same this season, we can, of course, return to the Final and finish on a better note. "
This is some motivational tool Pop employed here. Nothing like getting a veteran team like the Spurs riled up before the season gets underway.
This is exactly what San Antonio needs. They need to play with a chip on their shoulders the entire season. So what better "chip" than to show them Miami celebrating a comeback win which eventually led the Heat to back-to-back titles.
In a Western Conference with hungry, young teams, such as the Thunder, Rockets, Warriors, Nuggets, Clippers, San Antonio needs every advantage they can get. It doesn't have to be a roster move, a change in lineups, or a winning streak – a simple reminder of what could have been may end up being all the Spurs needs to redeem themselves comes June.