The Suns flew over enemy territory as they landed in San Antonio on Friday.
In my introductory blog for Suns.com, I explained that I spent the past four seasons working for the San Antonio Spurs before making the switch last summer. I admit it wasn’t an easy thing watching the Suns and Spurs play each other during the regular season. I was like a mother watching her two kids wrestle in the back yard: “It’s okay as long as no one gets hurt!”
But as my first season with the Phoenix Suns turns into my first postseason with the Suns, we run smack-dab into the Spurs. Now instead of kids wrestling, they’re sword fighting. Someone is most definitely getting sent home after this series. It’s time to choose a side.
Suns in six.
Why will the Suns win? Because they say so. This group of guys isn’t fearful or even (ahem) sternly focused… they’re downright enthusiastic. Steve Nash, Amaré Stoudemire, Shaq, and company are eager to shed the ghosts of last year and put on a performance that will haunt the Spurs for a change.
Yesterday I was fortunate enough to tag along with the team on their trip to Texas. For me, it was a return home, but for the Suns, it was a trip into enemy territory. We flew over the AT&T Center, saw Spurs billboards on the freeway, and I even ran into the Spurs Coyote (more on that in a second). Despite this town’s love for their team, there is a nervousness in San Antonio. The Spurs know they can be beaten and they are questioning if they have what it takes to stop Shaq from demanding that they start their summer early.
Finally, allow me a quick personal note about the trip. The travel day is a blur of buses, airports and new experiences. One minute I’m getting screened by airport security out on the tarmac and the next I’m enjoying a delicous lunch (orange chicken from Pei Wei!) on the charter flight while watching Raja Bell, Boris Diaw and Brian Skinner try to take all of Tim Kempton’s chips in a game of poker. Then we land and find our way to the hotel, where I get to work (check out the photos from travel day). But there was one more thing that had to be done though. Fiesta.
Fiesta San Antonio is actually several large festivals around town all tied together with the same theme: Eat a lot. I can get behind a mission statement like that. Anyway, after my work I cabbed it to one of the festivals still in my Suns gear from the flight. As I approach the entrance I ran into none other than the Spurs Coyote. He did his best to deny me entry, but ladies and gentlemen, I would not be stopped. Did I get some comments? Sure, there were more than a few people who pointed at my shirt and yelled, “WHAT IS THAT??” I politely informed them, “It’s a 2008 Suns Championship shirt… I just bought it early.”