Former San Antonio Spurs power forward Malik Rose was one of the most respected players on the team with his hustle and energy on both ends of the floor.
Now a Philadelphia 76ers' commentator for their games, Rose still keeps tabs on his former team and teammates who are on their final run for the franchise's fifth championship.
On what's the most important issue for the team's title dreams, Rose told Hard 2 Guard Radio:
They’re always going to have that nucleus with Tim, Tony and Manu- those guys know the system and they know each other…they do a good job of surrounding those guys with good role players. Guys, who do one or two things but do them well; like Gary Neal or Matt Bonner. The real key with San Antonio is how healthy are they going to be come April, May and June. That’s kind of been their Achilles heel for the last couple of seasons. As their health goes, they will go.
That's a statement that Spurs fans will whole heartedly agree with. Unlike last year, this Spurs team had a whole training camp and preseason to learn each other's games on the court and how to put each other in situations to succeed. Boris Diaw, Stephen Jackson, and Patrick Mills were players who came in late in the season and were still looking to get comfortable with their teammates and that's what ultimately cost them the series against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Spurs appear healthy right now and they are playing like a championship caliber team.
Currently at 27-9 before their matchup against the New Orleans Hornets, they've blown out teams with ease with the exception of a few like the recent game against the Houston Rockets.
San Antonio has played extremely well despite their lopsided schedule filled with back to backs early in the season and they haven't been strangers to two set of back to backs (four games in five days) either. If the Spurs can keep playing at a high level at the end of the season with an easier schedule (especially in March where they play 14 games and only two of them are away), Spurs fans will have more reason to believe in Malik Rose's statement that where their health goes, they go.
Not sure I agree with the writer that last years late arrivals made the spurs loose the series. I feel more like those moves really helped us get to the WCF and Jackson had great perfomances against OKC while Green and other experienced Spurs role players failed to make an impact.
Not sure if Spurs have anything tradeable to make this team better? Waive Blair and gamble on Kenyon Martin - he ought to go for less money now rather than not playing at all.
Why does the writer always refer to the schedule? Aren't all teams have heavy loads? STOP cpmlaining and just play the game!
@rtesoro440 Man, i knew you would be on here complaining again. It is because the Spurs have played alot more road games than 80 percent of the league if not more. Oh, and learn how to spell the word "complaining".
@rtesoro440 Normally, it's not a big deal, but when you compare the Spurs' first half scheduling with more back-to-back games and so more road games, it can explain the 1-2 game difference that OKC and the Clippers have on the Spurs. OKC has the NBA's best record but has had the easiest schedule of the three teams.