It took six years for San Antonio to return to the NBA's biggest stage and they found some trying experiences, none more deflating than Game 6 of the NBA Finals, which could have clinched the unlikeliest of titles for the franchise.
The 2012-13 Spurs stand as a reminder to every owner and general manager who are looking for a quick fix by firing a coach or shaking up the roster that there is virtue in patience, especially when you know you have good people working for you. Let's hope the final box score of Game 7 does not invalidate what has been a remarkable season in San Antonio, and more teams take the big-picture approach that has worked so well for the Spurs. Here's a review of San Antonio's season that came so close to immortality:
The title run: They didn't get to walk away with the ultimate glory, but they should walk away with no regrets. The Spurs have had the best regular-season winning percentage the past three seasons, and have made deep playoff runs the past two seasons, all despite inexplicably being branded as "too old."
The continued excellence of Tim Duncan: Even he could not have imagined playing at such a high level this deep into his 30s. Duncan was the model of efficiency this season, averaging 17.8 PPG and 9.9 RPG in about 30 minutes per night. More amazingly, he shot a career-high 82 percent from the free throw line, turning a previous weakness into a strength. Duncan looks as if he can continue to produce at this level as long as the Spurs keep the supporting cast stocked with talent.