Found June 18, 2013 on Fox Sports:
During his team's Game 3 rout of the Heat, Gregg Popovich was shown on TV talking to his players while they were in the process of burying Miami with a stirring offensive display. ''When you're open, let it fly,'' the Spurs' coach told them. ''Put your name in the paper.'' A day later, San Antonio guard Gary Neal was asked about that bit of encouragement. ''That's what you guys hear,'' Neal said with a chuckle, implying the give-and-take isn't always so sunny. In his 17th season coaching the Spurs and his fifth NBA Finals, Popovich is having one breakout series, with this team one win from another title entering Game 6 on Tuesday night. It's also been a banner finals for Popovich in the interview room. He has spent almost two weeks now being questioned about the health of Tony Parker, the Spurs' defensive strategy against LeBron James and Danny Green's remarkable 3-point shooting. At times, he's been illuminating, as when he spoke admiringly of James' ability to drown out criticism when things aren't going his way. At other times, he's been funny, his dry wit and deadpan delivery drawing laughs when least expected. Mostly, however, he's been combative, sarcastic or just plain dismissive. Mostly, he's just been Pop. Whether he's dragged kicking and screaming into those live television interviews during games or he's having his teeth pulled during postgame news conferences, Popovich has been as irascible as ever. ''Pop is always funny to me'' Green said. ''So when I watch his press conferences they kind of give me a good chuckle.'' One more win means Popovich will have his fifth championship. One more win means he also won't have to do anymore news conferences for quite some time. Would winning the trophy mean more to him than ending those news conferences? Hard to say. A look at some of Pop's greatest hits from these finals: --- THE GOOD POP: When an 11-year-old Latino boy who sang the national anthem before Game 3 was the subject of racist remarks on Twitter, Popovich leapt to the defense of Sebastien De La Cruz. ''He's a class act,'' Popovich said. ''Way more mature than most his age. And as much as those comments by the idiots saddens you about your country, he makes you feel the future could be very bright.'' --- THE DISMISSIVE POP: Popovich was asked after a 109-93 loss in Game 4 why Manu Ginobili had been so ineffective to that point in the series. ''I don't know,'' he said. ''If I knew that I would have already fixed it.'' --- THE INSTRUCTIVE POP: In illustrating the maturation of James before Game 2, Pop relished a chance to send a couple digs toward his favorite targets in the media. ''He's a grown man. He doesn't need any of you to tell him anything,'' he said. ''He knows more than all of you put together. He understands the game. If he makes a pass and you all think he should have shot it, or he shoots it and you think he should have made a pass, your opinions mean nothing to him, as they should not mean anything to him.'' --- THE TRITE POP: Popovich was asked about his strategy going into Game 5 and whether he could do anything different after James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh struck for 85 points in Game 4. ''I'd hate to be trite and say anything is possible,'' he cracked. ''Your question demands my triteness.'' --- THE CRAZY POP: Popovich said he has nothing to do with the unflappable nature of the Spurs as a team, and that it's all a testament to Tim Duncan. ''I think it's just a reflection of their personalities,'' he said. ''If anybody is crazy in the group, it's me. They pretty much have an even keel. Timmy Duncan sets the tone, and he just competes. Whether he does well or whether he does poorly, game in, game out, year in, year out, he competes and people just follow that.'' --- THE COMBATIVE POP: When the Heat went small and won big in Game 4, a reporter wanted to know if Popovich thought smaller lineups were a growing trend across the NBA. Nice try. ''You're not serious,'' he said. ''You want me to talk about the state of the NBA?'' --- THE ENLIGHENING POP: While decrying the lack of job security in the coaching profession these days, Popovich let everyone know why he thought the Spurs were so successful. ''The continuity I think breeds, it breeds trust, it breeds camaraderie, it breeds a feeling of responsibility that each member holds towards the other,'' he said. ''The ability to be excited for each other's success, not to develop territory and walls, but to stay participatory. To be able to discuss, to argue and come out at the end on the same page with the same passion and the same goals. ''And I think without continuity that's pretty impossible, because all the immediate tendencies of instant success starts to take over and that just breeds failure.'' --- THE FUNNY POP: Popovich was asked to compare Green to former standout Bruce Bowen after Game 5. ''I guess they both are similar in the fact that neither one of them has any moves,'' he said. ''They just shoot it. They don't really dribble or do anything else.'' --- THE PHLEGMATIC POP: On why he switched which end of the court his offense started at on the road this season: ''I was bored.'' --- THE UNSYMPATHETIC POP: It is well known that Popovich rode Parker hard when he first came to the NBA from France as a 19-year-old point guard. That subject came up after Parker led the Spurs to a win in Game 1. ''Are you related to Tony? Are you concerned I treated him badly? You seem very concerned about Tony's treatment,'' Popovich said. ''Tony makes $900 million a year. ... He's fine.'' --- THE STUBBORN POP: No matter how many ways it has been asked, Popovich won't concede to the success the Spurs have had in making things difficult for James. Is that maybe because he doesn't want to make James angry? ''You're digging really deep,'' Popovich said. ''You must need to write an article by 4 o'clock today or something.'' --- THE CONFOUNDED POP: After Parker was injured in Game 3, one reporter wondered if Popovich would ''mail in'' Game 4 by resting Parker in hopes of having him at full strength for Games 5, 6 and 7. ''I have to tell you that phrase `mail in Game 4,' it confuses my whole brain,'' he said. ''I don't think I can think past that comment. I would like to help you, but I don't know how to help you.'' --- THE HELPFUL POP: When Popovich walked up to a group of reporters at the morning shootaround before Game 4, no one immediately asked a question. ''Do you want me to think of the questions, too?'' --- Follow Jon Krawczynski on Twitter:

Gregg Popovich Takes No Prisoners When Asked How Spurs Will Respond to Game 6 Loss to Heat in NBA Finals (Video)

Thank you, Gregg Popovich. Thank you for what has been a great NBA Finals, where you and Erik Spoelstra have coached an incredible series. Thank you also for Game 6 on Tuesday night, when outcoached yourself with some final-minutes substitution patterns that threatened to destroy Twitter. But, Gregg Popovich, thank you most of all for your postgame news conference. Popovich has never...

Gregg Popovich on legacy after game 7, “It will be wine and food. This is a job”

Just when you thought that Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich was out of witty retorts, you might want to check out this tweet from TNT reporter David Aldridge: Pop, preempting questions about his "legacy" after tonight: "What's my legacy? Food and wine. This is just a job." — David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) June 20, 2013 Never Change Gregg Popovich, Never Change….

Gregg Popovich Gives Epic Answer On How To Prepare For Game 7

Gregg Popovich with another epic post game interview after the Spurs lost Game 6 to the Heat in OT on Tuesday night. When asked how to prepare for the decisive Game 7, Pop answered: “I get ‘em on the bus and it arrives on the ramp over here, we get off the bus and we go on the court and we play. That’s how we get ready.”

Gregg Popovich gives hilarious answer on Spurs prep for Game 7

This might be one of the greatest responses to the question of “how do you get your team into a game 7″ in the history of sports.  The delivery was absolutely perfect, nice work Gregg Popovich. [@cjzero]

Gregg Popovich responds to not fouling Ray Allen before game-tying shot, “That’s The European Question, Right?”

One of the lingering questions from game six of the 2013 NBA Finals was the Spurs decision to not foul Ray Allen on his game-tying three point attempt before the end of regulation. As you might figure, a reporter asked Gregg Popovich that question and Pop didn’t disappoint with a very “Pop-Like” answer: Never Change, Gregg Popovich!

Manu Ginobili tells story about fake shot that irritated Greg Popovich, acts out Pop’s reaction

During the first quarter of game five of the 2013 NBA Finals between the Heat/Spurs, ABC did a quick cut-away to an interview with Spurs forward Manu Ginobili. In the segment, Ginobili tells a story about the time that he faked out Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich by pretending to take a shot at inopportune time. As Manu eventually passed the ball to Tony Parker, Manu decided look...

GIFs: Manu Ginobili screaming like Gregg Popovich is even more funny in slow motion

Manu Ginobili's impersonation of Gregg Popovich was pretty spot on, not to mention hilarious. But it's even more funny in slow motion, we've decided.

Rapper Flo Rida’s Manager Claims Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich Banned Them From NBA Finals, Calls Act ‘Discrimination’ (Audio)

Gregg Popovich is prejudiced against bad rappers and people who heckle him. That is the claim by Freezy, manager for rap artist Flo Rida, in a radio interview prior to Game 6 on Tuesday. Freezy and his Miami-based client have been banned from the last two games of the NBA Finals, the manager said, in what he declared was “an act of discrimination.” “This is an act of discrimination...

Heat go down big early, can't come back in Game 5

SAN ANTONIO Gregg Popovich matched the Miami Heat and went small. And his San Antonio Spurs came up big. After Heat coach Erik Spoelstra had moved guard Mike Miller into the starting lineup in Game 4 of the NBA Finals, the Spurs coach counteracted by replacing center Tiago Splitter with guard Manu Ginobili in Sunday nights Game 5 at the AT&T Center. The move worked brilliantly...

Tim Duncan played with his kids at halftime of Game 5 (Video)

When you think of the San Antonio Spurs, you think of a team that is all business. You have Gregg Popovich who gives one-word answers during in-game interviews, and you have Tim Duncan, who rarely shows emotion on or off the court. But the Spurs apparently kept things loose enough for Duncan to have a [...]

Gregg Popovich was close to cutting Danny Green last year

The San Antonio Spurs lost a heartbreaker in Game 6 against the Miami Heat on Tuesday night, but they still have another chance to win an NBA title in Game 7 on Thursday night. If not for the stellar shooting of Danny Green throughout the series, LeBron James would already be living up to the [...]

Flo Rida’s Manager Claims Gregg Popovich Had Him Banned From Rest Of NBA Finals

Miami native and rapper, Flo Rida, and his manager, Freezy, are courtside regulars seated next to the visitor’s bench at American Airlines Arena, but there’s a good chance they won’t be cheering on the Heat in Game 6 or 7. You may remember the rapper’s manager from his ejection during Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals in Miami which immediately went viral. Tuesday...

Flo Rida’s manager Freezy: Gregg Popovich had me banned from Games 6 and 7

Rapper Flo Rida and his crew have been some of the most visible Miami Heat fans at the American Airlines Arena throughout the entire postseason. That trend will not continue for Game 6 or Game 7 (if necessary), because Flo Rida’s manager Freezy has been banned from attending. During an appearance on 104.3 The Ticket’s [...]
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!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.