Hope springs eternal at the start of training camp for most NBA teams as fans dream of a league championship.
But veteran coach Gregg Popovich has a message for San Antonio Spurs supporters — and would-be bettors.
“I probably shouldn’t say this, but I’ll say it anyway, what the hell,” Popovich said at media day. “Nobody here should go to Vegas with the thought of betting on us to win the championship.”
The 73-year-old Popovich has been the head coach of the Spurs since the start of the 1996-97 season and has led San Antonio to a 1,344-701 record, five NBA titles and 22 straight postseason berths.
“And I know somebody will say, ‘Gosh, what a Debbie Downer. There’s a chance. What if they work really hard?’ It’s probably not gonna happen.”
The sportsbooks agree. BetMGM list the Spurs as +50000 to win the NBA title.
Popovich won those NBA titles with players such as David Robinson, Tim Duncan, Kawhi Leonard, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker. He has a young team filled with faces and names he doesn’t recognize.
“I walked into the film room today, and there was this young kid sitting there, and I said, ‘Who the hell are you?'” he said.