You would think after playing a grueling six-game series against each other, the San Antonio Spurs and Memphis Grizzlies would have seen enough of each other.
As Richard Jefferson put it during last season's playoff series, after a while, you get tired of seeing the same faces.
But both teams look forward to tipping off in less than an hour.
The Spurs lost in the first round after one of their most successful seasons in franchise history, but today, the slate gets wiped clean.
"The Spurs are a team we have history with last season and they're one of the best teams in the league so there's no better way to open up the season than to play one of the best teams," Conley said.
After surprising many by beating a first seed and having a competitive series against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Conley says this season, the stakes are higher.
"I think this year we have a little more expectations from the fans, the media," Conley said. "We set the bar a little bit higher this season and we gotta get further than we did last season."
But regardless of their success last season, Memphis coach Lionel Hollins would prefer that his team not believe in their own hype from last season.
"Don't get diluted into believing all of the hype from last year," Hollins said.
As for Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, he says his team is ready for the season to start after the NBA lockout postponed the start of the season.
"It's the first game of the season, everybody's excited," Popovich said. "We're ready to go."
The Spurs have one new player to game plan for that they didn't have to worry about in the playoffs, Grizzlies forward Rudy Gay.
"It feels great (to have him back). He was the missing piece for us last year," Conley said. "He's a huge part of our team and for us not to have him really hurt us and now that we've got him back is a comforting feeling."
Among other players, the Spurs will look to second-year guard James Anderson to hold off Gay,
"I think I have a jumpstart on everything. I had a good training camp so I'm ready for the year to start," Anderson said. "It's pretty much the same as last year. I want to come in and help the team on both ends, especially the defensive end. They are a young and talented team and it's going to be a good game."
"He's a good player, he's an all-star caliber player," Popovich said of Gay. "He'll get a lot of attention."
Tipoff is at 7:30 p.m. CST. Look for postgame information later tonight and tomorrow on ProjectSpurs.com
Paul Garcia contributed to this post.
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Despite the win this proves we need a 5th Big, Bonner is horrid defensively, dosen't really rebound. Is he really worth 2-3 3pts a game for as many minutes as he will get?
I'm sure Pop and the front office already know that by now. They'll probably have something up their sleeves.
@antarescrane @mrniko @Emicris yeah I agree bonner isn't that great defensively, but when set with the lineups of tiago and kawhi and leonard they helped enough defensively to kind of mask it. Now I'm not saying play him a lot cause blair got barely any time and he'd probably be more suited, but he benefited a lot from playing with those other defensive players who masked his inabilities. With that I would like to say that tiago played amazing, it was quiet physical defensive play out of him. Just what we need. Oo and bonner also looked good defending gasol instead of randolph cause he can keep up a lot better with a pick and pop better than a straight up post up which was the difference between the two memphis big men last night. Good call by pop to notice how each of them was playing and to send defenders on them depending on their play rather than size accomodations
@mrniko@Emicris Yes, you are absolutely right. I think he might be more like a 10-15 min guy though. His ability to hit 3 pointers is extremely valuable. Just need someone who is the exactly opposite of him. He is a role-player, so he must be used like a role-player. Having another guy like Tiago would make the spurs amazing.
@mrniko I agree with you. Plus when they all get in foul trouble what happens? Other than that they played a good game.
The spurs have a lucky night. But it was the small guys who contributed. Blair barely played and contributed 3 points. TD was used sparingly and splitter tended the rebounds. Well done spurs. Hope it lasts.
The Spurs were lucky? They played terrific defense tonight, allowing only 82 points and that was with the refs making some bad calls as well. Dude, just be a man and admit that you were wrong.
On the flip side, I'm glad you finally something positive.