|More Than A Club...|
More to come...
’s demise have
been greatly exaggerated. Barcelona
It’s what everyone seems to be talking about, or secretly hoping for. Alas, there are but a few tweaks needed to this juggernaut.
These two players alone improve the team immeasurably; mainly by potentially providing help upfront to Lionel Messi (Neymar) and, by signing Mathieu, adding not only a top-class defender, but height at set-pieces – a shortage that cost Barcelona at crucial moments this past season.
Above all, though, is the system. It’s why there’s always hope for
For me, Barça are like the San Antonio Spurs – the system is the most important factor in their success. That is the beauty of what Pep Guardiola imparted and perfected at
building on Frank Rijkaard’s good work and Johan Cruyff’s bible. Barcelona
As long as the three pillars (Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Messi) remain there will be success. It’s similar to the Spurs with Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili; as long as those three are intact, under Coach Gregg Popovich, all is good in the hood.
These are champion athletes; they are a different breed from the everyday person. They have reached a level millions dream of and strive for, and have mastered their craft. Their motivation can’t be questioned.
The Three Pillars - Xavi, Messi and Iniesta
Yes, they will go through lows – they are human – but ultimately champions always discover ways to adapt and improve.
Forget not that
failure is winning the league with 100
points and reaching the Champions League semi-finals. This is how great they’ve
Context and perspective shouldn’t be discarded.
This remains a colossal club with a prolific youth system and an ingrained culture. Their run is far from over. Expect
to remain the benchmark for the next four to five years. Barcelona
Speaking of the Spurs, I pick them to win the NBA Finals over the Miami Heat. Partly that’s because I’m so hopeless at making predictions.
Deep down I want the Heat to win it all, so I’m hoping I’ll turn out to be wrong – again.
I would love to see LeBron James and his Heatles emerge as champions. I am a James fan – unashamed. I was Cavalier, now I’m hot in
because of him. In my opinion James
is the greatest basketballer the world has ever seen. South Beach
But, back to topic...
I believe the Spurs have too much for the Heat. It’s been said
don’t have Roy Hibbert, who
terrorised the Heat with his length during the seven-game nail-biter against
the Indiana Pacers. But the Spurs have Tim Duncan, Tiago Splitter and Boris Diaw.
They will cause havoc for the Heat aerially. San Antonio
That’s a three-headed monster Coach Popovich will be able to rotate. And essentially it means the Spurs will have a fresh big-man throughout the 48 minutes whereas Hibbert was, let’s face it, eventually overworked and worked out by the Heat.
The Spurs offence is also so efficient. They won’t give away turnovers – the Pacers had 21 in Game 7 – and in Tony Parker they have a man who can consistently cut through the Heat’s heart.
|"In the game like Tony Parker."|
The scariest thing on the Heat’s part is I expect
to steal one of the opening two games of the series in . Miami
Going for the Heat is LeBron James. He’s reached such a level of greatness he can take over any game, anytime. What’s most special is his ability to control a game, not just win it with a buzzer-beater. He can dictate where he teammates will be, get them in good positions to score and, if needs be, do it all himself.
Worryingly, Dwyane Wade is off thanks to a troublesome knee. He’s a wonderful competitor and he will produce a Flash-night like his game-swinging 21-point effort in Game 7 against the Pacers, but it hasn’t been consistent.
Sadly, I can’t count Chris Bosh as a series-swaying factor. Yes, he’s a top-notch basketballer, but like Wade he’s also hobbled. Still, even without injury, I am yet to see Bosh really impose himself on the Heat’s destiny during his three years in
This is the San Antonio Spurs; a consistent high level of play from all five players on the court is a minimum requirement.
I hope I’m proven wrong. I hope my prediction is incorrect.
But the head says
in seven. Sigh. San Antonio
Signed: Teboho Kitela Molapo