Have you heard of the Dallas Chaparrals or the San Antonio Gunslingers? If you are a fan of the NBA, you probably know the San Antonio Spurs. However, you may not have heard of the Dallas Chaparrals. You’re wondering what a chaparral is, right? A chaparral is a shrubby plant community that exists in regions with hot, dry summers and wet winters.
How are the Chaparrales and the Spurs related? While still in the ABA, the Dallas Chaparrals moved to San Antonio. Although the name of the team was originally going to be Gunslingers, the upper echelons of the franchise settled on “Spurs.” Although the Spurs were 3 of 3 in ABA playoff appearances, their greatest success has been in the NBA:
or 15 division champions
or 28 playoff appearances
o 10 conference finals
or 4 NBA finals
o 4 NBA championships (1999, 2003, 2005, 2007)
However, how did the Spurs fare during their debut year (1973-1974)? They started well, winning their first NBA game, 121-118 over the Philadelphia 76ers. The Spurs finished the season with a 44-38 record. While the Spurs were the league’s top scorers (115 points per game), they also had the worst defense (114 points per game). The saying that “the defense wins championships” turned out to be true, as the Boston Celtics swept the Spurs in the playoffs (2-0).
In 1999, the Spurs won their first NBA title. Due to the lockout, they finished the regular season with a 37-13 record. In the NBA Finals, they demolished the New York Knicks (4-1).
Four years later, the Spurs won their second NBA title. After an excellent 60-22 regular season, they then got rid of the New Jersey Nets in the NBA Championship (4-2).
The Spurs won a third NBA crown in 2005. After accumulating an impressive 59-23 record, they finally defeated the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Finals (4-3).
Then, in 2007, the Spurs won their fourth and most recent NBA championship. They finished the season with an excellent 58-24 record. In the Finals, the Spurs swept the Cleveland Cavaliers (4-0).
Throughout the history of the San Antonio Spurs, they have retired the numbers of six players:
Sean Elliot – # 32 (Forward): 1989-93, 1994-2001
George Gervin – # 44 (Forward): 1973-1985
Avery Johnson – # 6 (Guard): 1990-1993, 1994-2001
Johnny Moore – # 0 (Guard): 1981-1988, 1989, 1990
David Robinson – # 50 (Center): 1989-2003
James Silas – # 13 (Guard): 1973-1981
In addition to the Spurs retiring George Gervin’s jersey number, he is also a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame. Nicknamed “The Iceman,” the Phoenix Suns selected him in the 1974 draft. Throughout his career, the league included Gervin on top five NBA teams. He also played in nine NBA All-Star Games (1977-1985). As the culmination of his spectacular career, in 1996 Gervin was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Since moving to San Antonio and joining the NBA, the San Antonio Spurs have had tremendous success. Yet another NBA title is always his next goal. Use San Antonio Spurs merchandise to motivate the team as it gallops to its destination!