Somehow, we've made it this far without mentioning easily the game of the playoffs: the Spurs' incredible comeback to beat the Grizzlies in Game 5 in San Antonio. To review: the Spurs trailed by three at the end of regulation. Manu Ginobili hit an insane shot off a broken play with 2.2 seconds left, only to find that his toe was on the line and it was a two-pointer. After two free throws, the Spurs had one final chance. They threw it into Gary Neal, who took one dribble right and knocked down the three at the top of the key to send the game into overtime, where the Spurs eventually won.
This all made for a perfect storyline. See, the Spurs executed down the stretch, and the Grizzlies didn't. This shows the Spurs just never die, and explains why they are so tough to beat. Nevermind that Ginobili's shot came off a broken play or that the Grizzlies probably should have beaten the Spurs in a must-win situation that plays right into the home team's strengths. No, now the Spurs are the ones playing like champions and the Grizzlies are the ones that are rattled.
Thankfully, Ginobili himself swatted that idea away.
"I don't really think that we showed the heart of a champion. We got lucky, it's the truth," Ginobili said. "They played better in the second half, they executed down the stretch, and their defense is always tough.
In other words: nice job, Spurs, but if anyone thinks they can win this series playing like that in Memphis, they're in for a rude awakening. At least the Spurs realize it too.
In the meantime, let's pour one out for Neal, one of the league's best stories and someone well-deserving of his moment in the sun, given everything he's gone through.