Spurs: NBA's new villains? 

May, 16, 2007
SALT LAKE CITY -- You know what I love about this suspension stuff in the Spurs-Suns series? Finally, the Spurs are the villains. Took 'em long enough.

How long were these guys going to roll up 60-win seasons and make deep playoff marches before somebody got angry about it? Usually a team this successful provokes almost instant, visceral hatred -- think of the Yankees, Lakers and Cowboys of recent times.

Yes, the Spurs are in a pea-sized market, so we're not constantly swarmed by obnoxious Spurs fans. But other small-market teams have provided a lot more animus for the rest of the league. Certainly nobody was a big fan of Oakland's Bash Brothers, for instance, and the Jazz were public enemy No. 1 throughout the West for much of the 1990s.