For quite a while now the San Antonio Spurs have been my favorite organization in sports. From the top down they are built on the philosophy that "team wins". It was established by one of the greatest coaches in all of sports, Gregg Popovich. Pop, as he is known, is one of the most interesting, non-conforming, brilliant people in sports history.
It's safe to admit I've been a bit obsessed with how Pop and the spurs brass have built their roster, year after year, to compete at the highest level. They've continually done it without ego and without the need to overspend on "superstars". This isn't a secret to anyone who considers themselves a sports fan but I don't think that young athletes quite grasp how special and unique their teams are. For all the hoopla surrounding massive free agent signings and SportsCenter highlights, the Spurs quietly win championships.
They have built quite the scouting network and utilized it effectively. But for me it's what the put their emphasis on that really makes them unique. In the book Forces of Character, Pop is quoted as saying...
Being able to enjoy someone else's success is a huge thing.
When he talks about players having a selfish character trait, he continues to say...
At some point he'll start to think he's not playing enough minutes, or his parents are going to wonder why he's not playing, or his agents going to call too much. I don't need that stuff. I've got more important things to do. I'll find somebody else, even if they have less ability, as long as they don't have that character trait.
I think it's very easy to say that, as a coach, you look for this trait and are willing to put players on the court/field who are less talented if the posses this selflessness. It's much harder to actually stick with that mindset. The Spurs have. In turn they've won multiple NBA Championships. This is just one of the reasons why I love Pop and the Spurs, I'm sure this will hardly be the last time I post about them. Yesterday the video below was posted, it's their ball movement. Pure unselfish sports at it's best. It reminded me of their brilliance. It's ridiculous.