3 consolation prizes from the rocky start to the season

Devin Vassell, Jeremy Sochan, San Antonio Spurs
Devin Vassell, Jeremy Sochan, San Antonio Spurs / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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Even the rivals are not doing well

If you’ve read any of my stuff before, you know that I keep tabs on the Spurs' individual and team rivalries. I obsess over the Kawhi Leonard drama, James Harden’s inefficiencies, and how the Lakers manage to lose with their big three over and over again. When my team isn’t doing well, I turn to hating everyone else. It keeps the NBA interesting. 

The five best teams in the West are the Suns, Nuggets, Grizzlies, Pelicans, and Trailblazers. In my mind, the Spurs have never really had a bitter rivalry with the Pelicans, Blazers, and Nuggets. The Steve Nash Suns and Grit’n’Grind Grizzlies never really posed a threat to the Spurs dynasty, so even historical rivals are out of the top five.

The three NBA West teams that I would say have had the biggest stretches of beef with San Antonio are the Rockets, Warriors (remember how close SA was in 2017?), and Lakers, of course. 

The defending champion Warriors are 10th in the conference, and the Rockets are the only team worse than San Antonio. Even though James Harden is long gone from Houston, I still can't stand that franchise. 

The Lakers, once again, are outside of the playoff hunt, sitting at a measly 7-11, one spot ahead of San Antonio. 

The Spurs don’t really have a rival in the East, but the Dejounte Murray Hawks are in the playoff hunt, despite being embarrassed in a recent loss. 

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And, of course, the Kawhi Leonard Clippers are barely above .500 and seventh in the conference, although the saga never ends, with Leonard continuing to miss games due to injury.