San Antonio Spurs

February 14, 2012 393 No of hits
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San Antonio Spurs

The San Antonio Spurs, among the most successful franchises in the National Basketball Association (NBA) during the past two decades with four league championships in a nine-year span from 1999-2007, actually debuted as the Chaparrals in Dallas, Texas in the American Basketball Association (ABA) in 1967-68. There were three seasons as the Dallas Chaparrals, one as the Texas Chaparrals and two more as the Dallas Chaparrals before the franchise left Dallas for San Antonio, Texas before the 1973-74 season.

The San Antonio Spurs debuted that year and maintained their predecessor's success during the ABA's final three seasons before joining the NBA prior to the 1976-77 campaign. The franchise won just one playoff series to that point, despite qualifying for the post-season eight times in nine ABA seasons. After an average rookie campaign in the NBA, the Spurs got rolling with George "the Ice Man'' Gervin leading the way. The Spurs won their division five times in six seasons from 1978-83.

After a down period from 1984-89 with just three playoff trips and no series wins, the Spurs 1987 NBA Draft pick -- 7-foot-1 center David Robinson from the Naval Academy -- finally joined the team. The Navy waved three of five years that he was supposed to serve. With NBA rookie of the year Robinson, the Spurs won the Midwest Division and swept Denver in the playoffs, but dropped a second-round set to Portland in seven games. As the team was built around Robinson, the Spurs' level of success increased markedly.

The Spurs qualified for the post-season seven straight years after Robinson's debut. He was the league's defensive player of the year in 1992 and MVP in 1995. The Spurs were exceptional with a 62-20 mark that season and a playoff sweep against Denver and six-game win against the Lost Angeles Lakers. But they dropped a six-game set to Houston in the finals. The Spurs won the Midwest again in 1996, but lost in the second playoff round, and they dropped to sixth place in 1997 with an amazing 20-62 record.

That's a 39-game drop from the previous season, but it also afforded the Spurs the opportunity to take another 7-footer -- Tim Duncan from Wake Forest -- in the 1997 NBA Draft. Duncan was the league's rookie of the year that first season, as the Spurs were second in the Midwest at 56-26. And they opened the playoffs with a four-game win against Phoenix before losing in five to Utah. With Robinson and Duncan dominating the post, however, the Spurs overwhelmed their opposition over the next decade.

The Spurs were first or second in the Midwest from 1998-2004, and remained successful in the Southwest from 2005-11. The Spurs won NBA titles in 1999, 2003, '05 and '06 and lost in the Western finals in 2001 and 2008. But they lost in the first round in 2011 despite a 61-21 regular-season mark.

Tags:   San Antonio Spurs   The Spurs   Western Conference   Southwest Division  

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The San Antonio Spurs, among the most successful franchises in the National Basketball Association (NBA) during the past two decades with four league championships in a nine-year span from 1999-2007, actually debuted as the Chaparrals in Dallas, Texas in the American Basketball Association (ABA) in...

By: Richard Martine Created 76 months ago

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