Originally posted on Project Spurs  |  Last updated 5/1/13
When the San Antonio Spurs defeated the Los Angeles Lakers, it shouldn't have been a surprise if you saw Aron Baynes start in place of injured center Tiago Splitter. The team has always depended on their superstars, mainly Tim Duncan throughout every championship, to lead the way, but it's the system that Gregg Popovich established that made it possible. When Baynes made his playoff debut, it was made possible only by the faith Pop has in his coaching philosophy. "It was a high," Baynes said. "But at the same time there was business in front of me. I had to go out there and focus on what I needed to do, play that game plan. That's what's gotten us to this point right now. That's what I wanted to go out there and focus on, and, yeah, keep it rolling." (Justin Verrier/ESPN.com) Baynes is a testament to the system's success. It's not only role players either. This year the Spurs have been riddled with injuries and they've had more than enough pieces on the bench to fill whatever contribution was going to go missing. In Baynes' case, Baynes more than made up for Splitter's absence especially on the defensive end. His performance was important, but it all didn't hinge on him anyway. Baynes was being protected by 4 other players who were familiar with the system, something that was seen years before with names such as Nazr Mohammad. Aron may have been nervous, but he wasn't expected to contribute more than he had to, something that would set him up to fail and something the Lakers were doing to their new players. "It filters all the way down from the top to young guys. I'm one of those young guys, and I definitely see how it is and I just want to emulate what these older guys and veteran guys are doing." As Baynes points out, even the younger guys want to learn from this "team heavy" system. This is something completely opposite of what we saw with the Lakers, a "superstar heavy" team. Popovich's system depends on his superstars, but his stars are humble as if they were role players on and off the court. Their egos don't get in the way and that's already rubbing off on Baynes ever since he first stepped in to interact with the organization. Baynes was signed in January and already looks like he can contribute, a sight that likely wouldn't have existed outside of Pop's system so early in his NBA career. Pop's system is a testament to his vision and philosophy, "Team is Everything," and Baynes is looking to keep that mentality alive.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Browns owner ‘frustrated, emotional’ about Johnny Manziel

Raiders and Texans to play MNF game in Mexico City in 2016

Goodell wants to keep Raiders, Chargers in home markets

Deadly shooting breaks out at Dublin boxing weigh-in

Mike Shula vs. Wade Phillips: The best story of Super Bowl 50

LeBron: ‘I don’t really see a problem’ with Hack-a-Shaq

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Asking price 'too steep' for Howard trade to Celtics

Ex-teammate: 'Fair to assume' Lynch done with Seahawks

Steve Young: ‘I’m worried about Matthew’ Stafford

Report: Clippers, Nuggets have discussed Blake Griffin trade

Report: Louisville basketball implements postseason ban

Marshall: I haven’t spoken to Jay Cutler in two years

‘Crying Jordan’ photographer had no idea it existed until this week

NHL nightmare: No Canadian teams in the NHL playoff hunt

Seven unheralded players set to make major impacts in SB 50

‘Actor’ Todd Gurley wants to make ‘billions’

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

David Price donates $300K to build field for special needs kids

J.R. Smith pulls a Marshawn on 3-point contest slight

Tom Brady has clock counting down to Super Bowl LI

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

The Jaguars and NFL’s permanent calling in London

John Scott’s NHL All-Star Game Odyssey: Now in storybook form

Bazed but not confused: Why Bazemore is in for a payday

Tyrann Mathieu offers to help Johnny Manziel

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Manziel's father fears for QB's life

Johnny Manziel dropped by agent

Michael Irvin: Cowboys should save Manziel

QUIZ: Name the Super Bowl halftime performers since 1991

The merits of trading Blake Griffin to the Hornets

X-factors in Super Bowl 50

Could the Marlins contend in 2016?

Report: Browns to cut Manziel in March

Browns rip Manziel in statement

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker