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Gregg Popovich’s history of abusing Craig Sager during interviews now in video form

TNT composed a video called “Best of Coach Pop,” and they released it on Monday when the Spurs lost at home to the Thunder in Game 5 of the Western Conference finals. If you watch the video, you’ll notice the first minute is spent showing Gregg Popovich essentially abusing TNT reporter Craig Sager during interviews. Sometimes the Spurs coach kept it simple and made fun of Sager’s outfits, but in another clip he wiped his nose with Sager’s hanky. That was pretty darn disrespectful.

Anyhow, the video’s release was perfectly timed, because Popovich had a notable interview with Sager prior to the fourth quarter of Game 5 on Monday. Pop was asked two questions by Sager and gave a pair of two-word answers. Their interview lasted 13 seconds, tops, and that includes the intro and outro from Sager. Video of that is below via Awful Announcing (sadly in choppy form):

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‘I want some nasty’ shirts already popular among Spurs fans (Pictures)

As expected, the phrase “I want some nasty” has caught on quickly in San Antonio. When the Spurs erased a nine-point deficit in the fourth quarter of Game 1 against the Thunder, they did so after Gregg Popovich was heard urging his players to dig deep and yelling “I want some nasty!” at them. The team responded by grinding out a huge victory, and a new catch phrase has been born.

As you can see from the photos above, the Spurs’ new slogan is already contagious. A fan was spotted wearing a shirt with Pop’s face on it and “I want some nasty” written across the front during San Antonio’s Game 2 win. The website Promo-SA.com is also selling shirts with the phrase on them for $20. The last time the Spurs lost, the Stanley Cup playoffs hadn’t even begun. Given their current winning streak, it’s safe to say everything Popovich says at the moment is solid gold.

Gregg Popovich to Spurs during Game 1: ‘I want some nasty!’

With the athleticism and scoring ability that the Thunder possess, the Spurs know they have their hands full in the Western Conference finals. In order to win a seven-game series against Oklahoma City, San Antonio can’t try to run with them. Instead, they will have to use their depth to keep fresh legs on the court and try to get Kevin Durant and company into grind-it-out types of games. With that in mind, Gregg Popovich’s battle cry during the Spurs Game 1 victory makes perfect sense.

“I want some nasty!” Popovich could be heard saying during the broadcast.

Nasty he requested and nasty he received. Trailing by nine headed into the fourth quarter, the Spurs outscored the Thunder 39-27 down the stretch and held on for a 101-98 victory. Led by Manu Ginobli’s team-high 26 points, they finally began attacking the basket and holding Oklahoma City accountable on defense.

“I said that?” Popovich said after the game when asked about his new catch phrase. “The heat of the game, stuff comes up. So I talked to them about they’ve got to get a little bit uglier, get a little more nasty, play with more fiber and take it to these guys. Meaning you have to drive it, you have to shoot it.”

It appears to have worked. Tony Parker said Pop is always finding ways to motivate the team, and the phrase was clearly nothing out of the ordinary for him. But for people like us, it’s great television. Everyone wants to see their team get nasty in the most critical situations of the season, and Popovich willed his team to do just that on Sunday night. If the Spurs plan to win four games against the Thunder, they’ll need a lot more nasty as the series moves on.

Photo credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

Tony Parker: Gregg Popovich Has Mellowed Thanks to Age, Wine

Gregg Popovich is widely regarded as one of the best coaches in the NBA. Many people consider him to be the best. He’s also changed over the years, according to Tony Parker.

“As he gets older and drinks more wine, he gets more patient,” the Spurs point guard said.

“I always tell the rookies they’re lucky,” Parker said. “Because it’s nothing like when I was a rookie. He’s so nice to them.”

According to the San Antonio Express-News, Parker had been waiting for an eruption from Popovich all season but he hadn’t seen one until Wednesday night. The Spurs came out of halftime playing poorly against the Hawks, so Pop did a mass substitution, benching many players. The overhaul resulted in an easy 105-83 win.

San Antonio is 12-7 on the season, so whatever coaching method Pop’s been using seems to have been working. Maybe it’s the wine, maybe it’s not. If it is the alcoholic grape juice, I just hope it’s not any ******* Merlot.

Chest bump to Ball Don’t Lie, True Hoop

Gregg Popovich Basically Says Other Cultures are Way Better Than American

Gregg Popovich has some advice for Ricky Rubio and any other international players who are looking to adjust to life in America: don’t do it.  When superstars from overseas come to America to play in the NBA, one of the topics we always love to beat into the ground is whether or not they’ll be able to adjust to a new lifestyle.  According to Popovich, they shouldn’t even try to make the adjustment.

“These guys, they travel around the world,” Popovich said after the Timberwolves beat the Spurs on Monday according to the Star Tribune. “They’re more cultured than we are. Everyone acts like Americans are the ones … we have sort of an arrogance about us. Like we’re the cultured ones? Are you serious? Have you watched TV lately? Have you seen what Americans do? How many languages do you speak? And you wonder how they’re going to adjust to our culture? I hope they avoid it and keep their own!”

Well played, Pop.  That is some serious advice from a veteran NBA coach who has won multiple championships.  Forget about trying to do the Dougie and ignore those folks at the airport giving you the rock star treatment. Pay no attention to the grueling NBA schedule.

As far as Minnesota fans are concerned, Rubio has been adjusting fairly well.  He has been particularly good late in games and seems like a natural fit with the T-Wolves.  Maybe he has already taken Pop’s advice.

Chest bump to Pro Basketball Talk for the quote

Gregg Popovich: I Don’t Care What Tony Parker Says

A few weeks ago, Tony Parker had a lapse in judgment.  The Spurs guard probably realizes now that it isn’t a good idea to write your team off as a championship contender, especially when you are going to be playing with that team until 2015.  Naturally, Parker backed off of the comments he made about the Spurs being finished, but Gregg Popovich was obviously rubbed the wrong way by what he said.

“You think I care what Tony Parker says?” Popovich told WOAI-TV via Spurs Nation. “You think Tony Parker is gonna coach when he quits? Why would I listen to Tony Parker.”

Pop was then reminded that Parker owns a basketball team in France, and he responded by piling it on his All-Star guard even further.

“He can own but he can’t coach,” Popovich continued. “Get your ass out there and play, Tony. Tie the score. But talk about basketball, I don’t need Tony for that.”

What is interesting about all this is that Parker made it a point to take back what he said and assure everyone he would not have signed a four-year extension with the Spurs if he thought they couldn’t contend.  Despite the backpedaling, Pop still had to show that the remarks annoyed him.  Popovich sounded more like a coach talking about an ex-player than someone on the current roster.  While this isn’t the first time there have been signs of the two not getting along, they have plenty of time left in the offseason before they have to get over it.

Gregg Popovich: Rajon Rondo Playing with Elbow Injury Same as Manu Ginobili

When Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo dislocated his elbow in Game 3 against the Heat and returned to play the fourth quarter, it was nearly impossible not to be impressed. The man’s elbow was bending the wrong direction, he was in immense amounts of pain, yet he returned 10 minutes later to finish up the game with only one good arm. Many people compared his return to Willis Reed, who played a few minutes in the NBA Finals with a broken leg. I never saw what Reed did, but I haven’t seen many more courageous acts on the court than Rondo, and I argued it earned him hero status in Boston. I still feel that is the case. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich does not.

Popovich told the San Antonio Express-News “It’s really been hard to watch the playoffs and have them make Rondo out like Willis Reed. It’s like, Manu couldn’t even play the first game (against Memphis), and we probably shouldn’t have played him again. He went out there and worked through it, and you didn’t hear any of that kind of crap.”

“It’s like Rondo is the next coming of Willis Reed, the thing he did and the character he showed,” Popovich said. “Maybe he did show character and he was tough and all that, but it is no different than what Manu did. That just kind of angers me on a selfish level, so to speak.”

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