Straight From Video

You're only as good as your scouting, your DVD player and your tech support.

Updated: April 28, 2003, 11:10 AM ET
By By Ric Bucher, ESPN The Magazine
Seconds before Amare Stoudemire banked in the three that forced overtime in Game 1 of the Spurs-Suns first-round series, Phoenix coach Frank Johnson grabbed a clipboard, called over Stephon Marbury and frantically diagrammed the play that set it up. While Spurs forward Stephen Jackson sank two free throws, Marbury barked instructions to his teammates.

Gregg Popovich watched it all, attentive but stoic. The Spurs coach not only knew what was coming -- Phoenix refers to the play as Four Corners or Four Up -- he'd actually watched a video of it a few hours before tipoff. There was just one difference. In the regular-season prequel, San Antonio was up by six and Stoudemire missed.