Amidst injuries and a tough stretch in the standings, San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich commented on his frustration with this season’s events.
The San Antonio Spurs’ 2017-18 season provided issues throughout. This included an injury epidemic that impacted almost every player on the roster, sans Bryn Forbes and Patty Mills. While everyone but Kawhi Leonard remains healthy as of Mar. 19, it still took months to get there, especially with the abundance of short-term ailments that plagued different parts of the roster.
Head coach Gregg Popovich oversaw all of this, including the ongoing Leonard situation. However, he managed to put the Spurs at No. 3 in the Western Conference, for most of the season. A February-to-early-March struggle pushed the team down the standings, but a three-game winning streak provided positive momentum towards a playoff spot.
Before Monday’s game vs. the Golden State Warriors, Popovich, according to ESPN’s Michael C. Wright, commented on this season’s problems, calling it “frustrating.” Though, he noted how the “challenges” pulled everyone closer:
“It’s been a frustrating season,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “But the challenges have pulled a lot of people closer. You have to do different things to try to stay afloat. It’s been rewarding, as counterintuitive as that sounds.”
10 things you may not know about Gregg Popovich. pic.twitter.com/IWbXggcAKJ
— HoopsHype (@hoopshype) March 17, 2018
Without Leonard, this season had the potential to be worse. LaMarcus Aldridge’s revitalized play proved otherwise, along with the play of Dejounte Murray, Kyle Anderson and other youngsters. It’s why San Antonio remains in the playoff picture, with a chance at the No. 3 or 4 seed before the season ends. If not, with the space growing between No. 8 and 9, the Silver and Black might have the inside track, pending there’s not another lengthy losing streak.
The final stretch of the season will feature more challenges. Potential playoff teams remain on the schedule, including the Houston Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz and Washington Wizards. All provide different looks for the Spurs, who struggled against Houston, Oklahoma City and Utah, to combat, making for a tough road ahead.