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February 3, 2015 Updates

If anything, Popovich said, he could wind up walking away before Duncan. Popovich signed a five-year contract extension last summer, but admitted that the length was a product of owner Peter Holt's desires more than it was his own. "It's a five-year contract, but the chances of staying for five years I don't think are very good," Popovich said. USA Today Sports

Basketball was our common ground—something we could talk about that didn’t drain him like his other daily conversations could. Basketball modified the tenor of our interactions and took us from boss and underling to something more like friends. It began with that back-and-forth during the 2007 NBA playoffs. Who was going to be right? The debate went on for years. After Paul, a Los Angeles Clippers guard, won the All-Star Game MVP in 2013, Obama reluctantly conceded, though Parker’s collection of four championship rings with the San Antonio Spurs may make the president’s case for him a little better than mine for Paul. When we started playing basketball on the campaign, Obama’s directive was straightforward: No one takes it easy on me. So we didn’t. We all played full-on, no mercy. This worked great until, after the 2008 election, the president took an elbow from another player that resulted in him getting more than a dozen stitches in the lip. Wall Street Journal

February 2, 2015 Updates

What they say is true. The Spurs have an ego you can’t see with an electron microscope. A favorite story is the time Cory Joseph, struggling with his game, called his coach and asked, “Pop, can I go back to the D-League?” I wrote: “There was, Joseph recalls, two or three seconds of silence. It isn’t often a first-round NBA pick asks to be reassigned to the D-League. It may be unprecedented for a first-rounder to make the request after four previous D-League stops in the same season.” Therein lies a secret to this team. NBA.com

Colleague Jackie MacMullan wrote this week wondering if the Patriots were the Spurs of the NBA. Stevens has embraced the opportunity to learn from Popovich when the Spurs and Celtics cross paths, and Stevens noted a desire to pick Belichick's brain down the road. Asked about those text message exchanges between Boston pro coaches, Stevens said the messages are, "More just encouragement; more just checking in and encouragement, more than anything else. First of all, it would be one-sided if it was about coaching. It would be me asking him what the heck to do. So, hopefully I’ll get a chance to sit down at some point in the future and talk to him. Obviously he’s incredible." ESPN.com

A good number of players who are too afraid to let their shooting percentage suffer wouldn’t even try to sink a halfcourt shot with less than a second remaining on the clock, so Boris Diaw should get some credit for at least trying Saturday night against the Clippers. Unfortunately, Diaw’s heave sailed over the backboard and hit coach Gregg Popovich, who was walking to the locker room early. For The Win

February 1, 2015 Updates
January 31, 2015 Updates

Tony Parker: I've been saying that for the last three or four years now that we've been in the golden era of point guards. It's unbelievable all of the great point guards that we have today in our game. Scoop: Where do you stick yourself in that conversation? Not that I want you to rank yourself, but where do you place yourself? Parker: It's always tough to say who is the best, you know. I think if you do a top five, anyone you pick can do almost anything on the court and is great for their team. So it's hard to say who is the one best. Scoop: But do you feel that you are in the conversation? Parker: Oh, definitely. ESPN.com

Scoop: Do you get mad when you are left out or not in the conversation? Parker: No, I don't get mad because at the end of the day I have the rings and that's the most important to me. At the end of the day when everything is going to be said and done and you'll look at numbers and stuff like that, I went to the Finals five times, the conference finals seven times, so it's like, I've been blessed and very lucky to be on a great team. So like I said, at the end of the day ... as long as I have the rings I don't care where they put me. ESPN.com

"So we needed a '3,''' said Popovich. "We really needed a '3.''' Leonard was a 6-foot-7 small forward with the strength to defend multiple positions. "And in the end, last minute, we finally pulled the trigger,'' Popovich goes on. "Scared to death, rolled the bones, didn't know how it was going to work out. What if Kawhi is not a competitor like George Hill? What if he doesn't care like George Hill? What if he doesn't get along with people? What if he's selfish? You always worry about that. And you do the best job you can -- meaning, R.C. and his guys, intel-wise, trying to figure out what we were getting. They felt comfortable about that, and they were right on the money.'' NBA.com

He is the Spurs' best defender and as versatile as anyone on their team offensively -- in the post, from the 3-point line, on the run or in the halfcourt, scoring or passing or rebounding. "His ego, it's in check,'' said Popovich. "We talk about getting over yourself. He's definitely gotten over himself. He doesn't put himself before anybody. You still have to have enough of an ego to have that drive to want to put your foot in somebody's neck and compete and defeat them, and understand that that's a guy you're going against and you want to come out on top. And he has that. He has that fire in his belly.'' NBA.com

Accusing a longtime “financial adviser and personal confidant” of betrayal and breaches of trust, Spurs star Tim Duncan has filed a lawsuit seeking to recover more than $1 million in damages. Georgia businessman Charles Banks, the defendant in the suit, is alleged to have withheld 20 percent of what Duncan was owed on his $7.5 million loan to Gameday Entertainment LLC, a sports merchandising company, without authorization. San Antonio Express-News

Banks, who had yet to read the 11-page suit Friday afternoon, told the San Antonio Express-News the legal action was “surprising” and “unfortunate.” He denied any wrongdoing. “We’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing to maximize our returns for our investors, including Tim, and let the lawyers work out the other details and what exactly they think they are entitled to relative to our other investors,” he said. “My guess is you’ll see this (lawsuit) dropped fairly soon.” San Antonio Express-News

Tim Duncan is ready to do battle on a different kind of court. NewsRadio 1200 WOAI reports the Spurs superstar has filed a seven figure lawsuit against a long time friend and financial adviser, claiming Atlanta businessman Charles Banks took advantage of their friendship to 'hustle' him out of millions of dollars in bad investments, which made money for Banks but not for Duncan. A key source tells News Radio 1200 WOAI that Duncan's losses, despite the modest demand of 'more than $1 million,' topped $20 million, on investments with Banks of roughly $27 million. WOAI.com

Duncan says his biggest investment, of $7.5 million, was in a company called Gameday which Banks headed. Without Duncan's authorization, the lawsuit claims that Banks withheld 20% of the money he was due as 'fees,' and at one point, Duncan says Banks forged his signature on loan documents. The lawsuit claims Duncan didn't realize he was being hustled until he had to get his finances arranged early last year due to a divorce. WOAI.com

January 30, 2015 Updates

Dan McCarney: Pop on Duncan: "Pretty special. He's carried us to this point with his consistency. I'm really thankful to the coaches for seeing that. I never know what to expect with All-Star picks. I know we didn't send out any chemistry kits or anything like that." Twitter @danmccarneySAEN

 

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