Originally posted on Crossover Chronicles  |  Last updated 12/16/12

The San Antonio Spurs have always been thought of as that grind-it-out team. That team that methodically breaks down defenses with its passing and low post play. Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili have long been able to slither their way through defenses and Duncan was just a point guard in a post's body with the way he could break down defenses with his post moves and the pass. There was not much more of a team built on efficiency than this one. But when most thought of those championship teams and the franchise in general are the hard-nosed defenses that slowed and bogged the game down. Fans hated it. Or if they did not hate it, it did not resonate with the kind of games the casual fan likes to watch. the Spurs were the 2000s equivalent of ugly basketball. But comparing them to the Bad Boy Pistons of the 1980s is going a bit far. Sure their games might have been ugly and their focus on defense and discipline was intense. But there were not dirty tactics (aside from Bruce Bowen's... which he has told me in the past did not occur). Or at least not the kind of physical bruising tactics that gave Detroit its nickname for that era. There were never any Jordan rules -- physically bumping and hiting Michael Jordan every time he came into the lane. There were never any Bill Laimbeer dirty tricks (read: punches). Or Isiah Thomas acts of being Isiah Thomas. The Bad Boys these Spurs ain't. And the Spurs of the last few years, since Gregg Popovich transformed them into a fast-breaking team with Tony Parker as the fulcrum. The Bad Boy Pistons do not approve. Yet, Tony Parker had to joke that the Spurs are quickly becoming and trying to emulate the Bad Boy Pistons for their rough and tumble style of play. Not quite. Sure the Robert Horry incident with Steve Nash is still ingrained in Suns' fans minds. And Popovich (and his progreny now) have used the hack-a-Shaq to put centers with free throw problems on the line late in games. He made an art of it actually just like Chuck Daly made an art out of Dennis Rodman doing something other than tattoos and hair coloring. The Pistons were bad on and off the court, doing the kind of extra curriculars that would drive opponents crazy. The Spurs appear finally to embracing some of this identity if you look at the actions some of their players have taken off the court in the last few weeks. First, photos leaked from the Spurs' Halloween party that featured Tony Parker -- aka Nick Fury -- and Tim Duncan -- aka The Punisher -- dressed as their favorite superheros, holding up toy guns threatening their favorite referee, Joe Crawford. You know, good natured fun. The kind of good natured fun that usually gets you a hefty fine from the arean. There were no fines issued for this bit of fun. And Duncan said there were no issues and nothing said when Joe Crawford officiated San Antonio's game against Charlotte this past weekend. Phew, that was a claose one. It further goes into the "above-the-law" anti-NBA establishment attitude that San Antonio has semingly adopted. After all, the big news from the Spurs was the $250,000 fine leved against the franchise for sitting their three best players for a nationally televised tilt with the Heat. The Spurs, of course being extra bad, spat in the NBA's face by losing by only two points. The latest indignity came from Stephen Jackson The Spurs' injured forward, already known for his spotty past and "Bad Boy" mentality and approach to the game, threatened Thunder forward Serge Ibaka on Twitter. The team fined him and Jackson issued an apology via Instagram. Jackson said in his apology and in later comments that the statements he made were "childish" and unprofessional. Certainly they were. Ibaka for his part stayed out of it, issuing no comment or denying any knowledge of what was going on. It was a busy month of questionable deeds for this usually quiet team. Bad boys? Probably not. Controversial? That sounds like the Spurs this year. [follow]

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 matchups for Week 12 of the NFL season

Tyrann Mathieu says Blaine Gabbert has a ‘better grip on what’s going on’

NCAA frees Kansas blue chipper Cheick Diallo

Rockets hold in-season training camp in attempt to rebound from disastrous start

Kansas City Chiefs: No Jamaal Charles, no problem

How the Warriors can win 72 games


Frank Gifford suffered from CTE, family announces

Syracuse basketball gets one scholarship per year back

LeBron James says his back feels better than it did a year ago

Sean Payton on firing Rob Ryan: Status quo ‘would be madness’

Report: Blue Jackets listening to offers for Ryan Johansen

Report: Greg Hardy cancels club event after 'catching heat'

How the Detroit Lions became the face of football on Thanksgiving Day

The 10 most disappointed fan bases of the 2015 college football season

Jimmy Butler wants Mason Plumlee to pay his $2,500 fine

Jose Bautista's bat flip inspires a holiday sweater

The Kristaps Porzingis comparison project

What’s next for Johnny Manziel and the Cleveland Browns?

Gisele Bundchen asks Tom Brady ‘all the time’ why he still plays football

Highlighting the biggest NFL games of Week 12

Greg Olsen calls Jason Witten 'the epitome of a pro'

Are Sidney Crosby and Mario Lemieux growing apart?

Stop sleeping on Giannis Antetokounmpo

Worst-case scenarios for end of college football season

Capitals, Wizards owner Ted Leonsis opposed to 'meddling'

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.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 matchups for Week 12 of the NFL season

The 10 most disappointed fan bases of the 2015 CFB season

Gronk: Takes mental toughness not to overeat on Thanksgiving

Blue Jays fans create website in effort to keep David Price

The five most overrated teams in the Week 13 coaches' poll

10 storylines for Week 13 of the college football season

Ranking the 10 best games of 2015 college football rivalry week

Examining the Mavericks' hot start

Johnny Bench(ed): Manziel demoted to third string

Mike Trout, four years in

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker