The San Antonio Spurs are perceived around the league and through the media outlets as being a boring, yawn-fest of a team that just quietly keeps winning. But under that normal, almost innocent exterior, lies a team that is subtly one of the funniest in the league.
Over the last decade, the Spurs have done a number of hilarious things that have caused a double-take from the sports world.
In response to Shaquille O'Neil complaining while he was with the Suns–that the Spurs obvious use of the 'hack-a-shaq' philosophy was the move of a 'coward'–Spurs coach Gregg Popovich had Michael Finley grab a confused Shaq just five seconds into the season opening game between the two teams, drawing the intentional foul.
Another example of Popovich and the Spurs' funny side came back in 2007 when on two separate nights, Robert Horry and Brent Barry were listed as inactive for not so serious reasons. Horry was officially listed inactive because of 'old age' and Barry was inactive because of a 'tummy ache'.
Popovich must have really enjoyed putting his two stars on the record for missing games with those reasons because he pulled that joke off the back-burner again this past Sunday night with the franchise's greatest player of all time, Tim Duncan.
Duncan was given the game off during this grueling 66-game schedule and the official reason was, of course, because he was 'old'.
(Image courtesy of Yahoo Sports)
This bit of hilarity, or at least the giving of a night off, came back to bite Popovich a bit as Duncan went on to receive a technical foul from the bench during the game for arguing calls. One point for the other team in what amounted to a 17-point win over the Philadelphia 76ers may not seem important, but you can guess that 'Old' Pop probably had more than a few words for his aging star, ones that probably weren't too funny.
I'm guessing it might be a while before Duncan gets to sit out another game to rest.