By Matthew Hamill
Bobcat Radio was graced by the presence of San Antonio Spurs sideline reporter for Fox Sports Southwest, Andrew Monaco, to discuss the Spurs first round match-up, the NBA playoffs and, of course, head coach Gregg Popovich.
The Spurs were magnificent during the regular season finishing the season with a franchise best 67-15 record, which ties the seventh best regular season record in NBA history. However, thanks to the Warriors, the record is only good for second in the West.
San Antonio are making their 19th straight appearance in the playoffs, which ties the fourth longest streak in NBA history.
Coming into their first round match-up against Memphis, Monaco said this is not the same Grizzlies team from earlier this season.
“So many new players and the injuries sidelining point-guard Mike Conley and Marc Gasol with his foot,” Monaco said. “It’s not the same Grizzlies team that we’ve seen in the past, so it absolutely favors the Spurs. Who come in healthy, who come in with way more weapons than Memphis will have.”
With the two teams going in opposite directions heading into the playoffs, the Spurs have a great first round match-up.
The health of his team is very important to Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich. Monaco said that when it comes to chasing history and protecting players, Pop is very good at managing things.
“And for him [Coach Popovich] you still want to win the right way, he’s not playing for 41,” Monaco said. “He’s playing for, can we be better today than we were yesterday and be better in the postseason? Because that’s what everybody remembers you for is the number of championships you win.”
Without a doubt, Popovich is one of the most intimidating interviews in professional sports and Monaco has had plenty of interviews with the Spurs head coach. Monaco said the first thing you have to do, believe it or not, is ask Pop a question.
“The last thing he [Coach Popovich] wants to hear is how much basketball you know,” Monaco said. “Let me tell you right now, no one is going to know more basketball than he knows, so don’t try to impress him with what you know. So just make sure you ask him a question.”
As far as what to ask Popovich, Monaco had a pretty good suggestion.
“He loves talking about his players,” Monaco said. “He can’t talk about his players or his coaches enough.”
So if you get the chance to interview Popovich, remember to ask a question, and make it about his players.
Popovich, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and the Spurs will host the Memphis Grizzlies in Game #1 of their first round series on Sunday, April 17 at 7 p.m.
In order to see Andrew Monaco, tune into the game on Fox Sports Southwest.