The one thing that I will take away from the Golden State Warriors 2012-2013 season is that this team never backed down from a fight, and never gave up when everything seemed futile.
For a team predicted by many to finish as one of the bottom-feeders in the Western Conference (hell, ESPN gave them a zero-percent chance of making the playoffs), taking the San Antonio Spurs to six tough games in the second round of the postseason was pretty damn impressive.
In the end, however, the veteran Spurs were just too much to handle for the Warriors, who fell 94-82 to San Antonio on Thursday night, eliminating them from the playoffs.
Tony Parker and Manu Ginboli shot just 4-22 from the field, but it was Parker who drilled a dagger 3-pointer from the right corner that put the Spurs up eight with over a minute remaining.
In essence, San Antonio controlled the game throughout, never relinquishing the lead after the first quarter. Any comeback attempt by the Warriors was quickly thwarted by a Gregg Popovich timeout and a few baskets by the Spurs.
Golden State pulled to within two points at 77-75 with under five minutes to play, but a 3-pointer from Kawhi Leonard and two 3’s from Parker ended any hopes of a dramatic victory. To demonstrate that this was indeed game of inches, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson both had 3-pointers curl in-and-out of the basket down the stretch that would have put the Warriors back in the game. Instead, it was the Spurs’ attempts that went in, and that’s all anybody should care about.
The Warriors 2012-2013 season was nothing short of success. Realistically, this team was never going to make a run to the NBA Finals, or, for that matter, beat the Spurs in the second round. Hell, the fact that they finished 12 games over .500 AND made the playoffs AND defeated the Denver Nuggets in the first round was unexpected and extremely impressive.
I give credit where it is due, and the amount of credit that the Golden State Warriors should receive this season cannot be quantified by any amount. In just one short year, this team grown from tanking for better draft position to playing home playoff games in the middle of May.
So, the Warriors and their fans should not be hanging their heads. What they should be doing is looking forward to the future, which, believe it or not, looks extremely bright.